Clinical Negligence

GP failed to attend home of mother who died from pneumonia

Specialist clinical negligence lawyers based at Thomson Snell & Passmore’s Tunbridge Wells and Dartford (Thames Gateway) offices, has secured a six figure sum the husband and children of a mother who died from necrotising streptococcal pneumonia and multi-organ failure, after GP failed to attend her at home.

The claimant in this sad clinical negligence claim was left raising his six children alone when his wife passed way. He also developed a depressive adjustment disorder as a result of witnessing his wife’s fatal collapse. The claimant contacted our firm to investigate the circumstances surrounding her death.

The claimant’s wife had been complaining of a tummy bug and also had flu like symptoms, diarrhoea and vomiting. His wife became increasingly unwell, was unsteady on her feet and so went to bed. Her breathing was rapid and she was very hot.

The claimant lived a two minute walk away from their GP surgery. The claimant’s daughter went to the surgery to ask for a GP to come and visit her mother at home as she was too ill to go to the surgery. The daughter was told to leave a contact number and that a doctor would telephone when they were available.

Whilst a number was left, the claimant did not receive any telephone call from the surgery. Nobody from the surgery came to the house.

A period of 24 hours passed with the claimant’s wife not significantly improving. At around 8am the next morning the claimant’s daughter found her mother shaking, with black fluid coming from her mouth. The claimant called for an ambulance.

The claimant’s wife was taken to Kent and Sussex Hospital (now Tunbridge Wells Hospital) where she remained in Intensive Care until she passed as a result of necrotising streptococcal pneumonia (pneumonia as a result of a streptococcal infection) which led to septicaemia and multi organ failure.

The team acting on behalf of the claimant and his family, pursued a claim which included the costs of care for the children until each reached the age of 18.

After negotiations, an agreement was made for a six figure sum to be awarded to the claimant and his children. The awards for the children were paid into court to be paid out on a monthly basis to support their care until the age of 18.f

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