Helping to improve patient safety is paramount to the work that we do. We are therefore concerned to hear that up to 270 women may have died prematurely as a result of a breast screening error related to an IT algorithm failure, which occurred between 2009 and the start of this year. Reports suggest that 450,000 women, aged between 68 and 71 were not sent their breast cancer screening appointments.
Mr Hunt said that there were “likely to be some people in this group who would have been alive today if the failure had not happened”.
It is understood that the Department of Health and Social Care was notified of the IT failure in 2009 in January this year. A solution to the problem was fixed by April 2018, and the Health Secretary confirmed that no further lives were at risk.
It is also foreseeable that a large number of women may have suffered with a poorer prognosis as a result of the failure to receive an appointment, because their tumours will not have been detected at an early enough stage.
From a medical negligence perspective, we will investigate as to whether the healthcare professionals caring for you acted in breach of their duty of care. If this is established, then we would have to seek medical evidence to prove that you were caused additional harm and a medical negligence claim would be calculated on this basis.
However, it is without doubt that victims may require additional surgery and may have suffered distress and anxiety as a result of the failure to diagnose their breast cancer at the appropriate time. They unfortunately suffered a reduction in life expectancy as a result of the breach of duty.
If you are concerned that you have been affected by this error or you believe that you have suffered an injury through healthcare treatment you’ve received, then please do not hesitate to contact one of our specialist solicitors at Lime Clinical Negligence.
If you’d like to discuss your personal situation please call a member of our Clinical and Medical Negligence team on freephone 0808 164 0808 for a free, no-obligation chat or complete the request a call back form and we will call you.