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    Our specialist meningitis negligence solicitors work with families to secure compensation when medical care has let them down.

    We understand the painful repercussions of poor treatment for meningitis and help families who have been affected to move forwards with their lives.

    Compensation cannot undo the harm done – but it can allow families to access help and support they would not otherwise be able to call upon.

    Our extensive experience with meningitis claims means we have excellent contacts with experts in the field.

    We work with people to:

    • help them uncover answers as to what happened in their case
    • highlight issues to help ensure the same thing does not happen again
    • get the help they need.

    We also work with families when a loved one has died due to meningitis.

    Common meningitis claims

    Meningitis claims usually relate to medical negligence in bacterial meningitis cases. People who suffer bacterial meningitis will usually make a full recovery unless there is a delay in treatment.

    Making a meningitis claim is possible when the care received failed to follow guidelines or was not up to the standard that would be expected of competent clinicians.

    Common valid meningitis claims relate to failures by clinicians to:

    • recognise meningitis symptoms causing delays in treatment
    • ask the right questions – or enough questions – to spot meningitis
    • treat meningitis as quickly as necessary and in the right way
    • check medical history before beginning treatment
    • correctly monitor progress and adjust treatment.

    Meningitis claims often involve children, as children and young people are particularly vulnerable to the infection.

    Parents can make a claim on behalf of a child up to their 21st birthday as the usual three year claim limitations do not apply to children until they reach the age of 18.

    There are no time limits on claims involving children or adults who have suffered brain damage that affects their mental capacity (ability to make decisions for themselves).

    Meningitis can be fatal if the correct treatment is not received quickly. About one in ten people with bacterial meningitis dies.

    Other long term complications of meningitis may include:

    • hearing or sight loss
    • ongoing problems with memory or concentration
    • seizures or epilepsy
    • issues with coordination, movement and balance
    • sepsis, which can result in amputations.
    meningitis-compensation-claims-enable-law

    Penny received a lump sum and will get annual payments for life to help with the complex additional needs and difficulties she now has. Those payments will amount to a figure in the region of £2 million.

    £2 million damages in meningitis claim

    Our meningitis lawyers have a lot of experience in investigating cases and securing compensation for people who have been the victim of clinical negligence.

    One case we dealt with saw us secure lifelong compensation payments for a baby girl who already faced the challenges of Down’s Syndrome and was left further disabled by undiagnosed meningitis.

    Penny* was seven months old when she was admitted to hospital with fever and vomiting. She was then discharged while still unwell and later admitted to another hospital where meningitis was diagnosed.

    The compensation case was complex as it involved demonstrating how Penny’s long-term disability had been made worse by the meningitis.

    Meningitis left her with worse cognitive problems than she would otherwise have had – her ability to think, solve problems, remember and understand were impacted. Her stamina was reduced and ability to do intricate tasks (motor skills) were also impacted.

    Penny received a lump sum and will get annual payments for life to help with the complex additional needs and difficulties she now has. Those payments will amount to a figure in the region of £2 million.

    *Name changed to protect the child’s identity

    Delayed diagnosis of meningitis

    Due to the potentially severe consequences of untreated bacterial meningitis and meningococcal disease, medical professionals are trained to look out for it.

    Babies, children and young people are particularly susceptible to meningitis and medics are taught to take account of the level of concern of parents and caregivers and to ask questions around how unusual this illness is compared to previous illnesses.

    Part of the job of our meningitis solicitors is to investigate whether the clinicians in your case acted in a way that accords with National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) guidelines and could have reasonably have been expected from a competent care provider.

    This is particularly complex in meningitis cases because some of the symptoms of meningitis can also be present in less severe viral illnesses that do not require emergency treatment.

    Common symptoms of meningitis include:

    • A non-blanching rash
    • Stiff neck
    • Confusion
    • Bulging fontanelle (in infants)
    • Seizures
    • Fever
    • Nausea
    • Lethargy
    • Irritability
    • Signs of difficulty breathing

    As soon as meningitis or septicaemia is suspected in a patient, a very specific path should be followed to ensure treatment is received quickly and the illness does not get more severe.

    Our lawyers will help you to discover if correct procedures were followed in your case. If they were not and you have suffered as a result, you have a right to compensation to help you deal with the impact.

    How much compensation will I receive for meningitis negligence?

    Compensation for meningitis negligence can be substantial because the harm done by the illness can be extreme.

     

    The amount of compensation an individual receives will depend on the specific damage done to them by meningitis and the costs involved in caring for them and paying for the equipment or adaptations they need to live a full life.

    Compensation for meningitis is broken down into two elements: general damages and special damages.

    General damages are intended to directly compensate for the pain and suffering endured.

    Special damages seek to cover the cost of treatments, equipment, loss of earnings and other expenses that may result from meningitis, including prosthetics in the case of sepsis and amputations.

    In the case of the death of an adult due to meningitis negligence, families who were dependent on them may be able to claim compensation. This is to help with the financial hole left by the loss of their income or to cover the cost of substitute services for things they used to do, such as childcare or housekeeping.

    No amount of money can relieve the pain of losing a loved one or being left with serious long term health issues, but reduced financial worries can make life easier. Where someone has long term health needs as a result of meningitis, compensation usually also means their care needs can be better met.

    Special damages will often form the most significant element of a claim. A specialist solicitor will spend a lot of time building evidence of the costs involved for an individual, now and in the future, as a result of the harm suffered due to meningitis. The aim is to ensure the claim covers as many of those costs as possible.

    General damages are usually paid in accordance with guidelines and may form a significantly smaller proportion of a claim.

    The table below indicates some of the general damages amounts that may be used in meningitis claims.

    Harm suffered due to meningitis negligence Guideline general damages* award amount

     

    *General damages only form part of a claim and are often far exceeded by the special damages element of compensation payments

    Amputations For a below elbow amputation of one arm: Up to £102,890.

     

    For an a below knee amputation of one leg:

    Up to £124,800.

    Epilepsy Up to £140,870
    Brain damage that affects memory and concentration, reduces the ability to work and where there is a small risk of epilepsy £40,410 to £85,150
    Deafness (total loss of hearing) £75,900 to £91,660
    Blindness (total loss of sight) Around £224,680
    Hands holding a petri dish with a pink liquid in
    Woman holding up a slide in a medical setting

    Partnered with Meningitis Now

    We’re committed to doing everything we can to help people who are impacted by meningitis.

    We ensure we remain well versed in the very latest information and developments in treatment and support available to share it with our clients.

    As part of this commitment, Enable Law partners with the charity Meningitis Now, which works to ease the burden for families touched by this illness.

    Speak to an Expert Meningitis Lawyer Today

    Having your Meningitis claim handled by an experienced medical negligence solicitor like the ones at Enable Law can really help. Enable Law are experienced at working with clients who are looking for a way to put their life back together. This includes help with obtaining prosthetics, assistive technology and finding suitable housing and adapting it to your needs.

    If you have any doubts about treatment received for meningitis, contact us now

    0800 044 8488