The NHS Litigation Authority (NHSLA) has again come under fire for wasting public money.

Following a ruling by the Senior Court Costs Office in favour of the claimant’s solicitors’ costs claim, Janine Collier, Executive Partner of Tees Law, commented that “public money was wasted (by the NHSLA) refusing to deal with the costs in a sensible manner.”

She further pointed out that, in this specific case where a horrific birth injury had gone unidentified and untreated by Peterborough and Stamford NHS Trust, the NHSLA “defended liability for 32 months and settled the case just two months before trial. Had the case settled pre-issue, the taxpayer would have saved in excess of £200,000.”

In support of these comments, Tony Simpson, Senior Advocate at Partners in Costs (PIC) emphasised that “costs could have been saved if the Defendant (NHSLA) approached the detailed assessment in a sensible manner”.

This is not the first time the NHSLA has been criticised in this way. Last autumn, Neil Sugarman, president of the Association of Personal Injury Lawyers (APIL), commented that “The NHSLA is its own worst enemy for pushing up costs against itself by dragging out claims and defending cases needlessly, only then to settle at the door of the court.”

As has also been pointed out, of course, many claims would not be necessary if the NHS paid greater attention to patient care. As Janine Collier commented, “The way for the NHSLA to save money is to improve patient safety (and) avoid these incidents happening in the first place”.

Speak with a solicitor

If you think you may have been the victim of poor patient care or medical negligence, contact us to discuss your possible claim for compensation.

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