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A quarter of UK doctors ’too scared to report’ clinical negligence


A new report has unveiled startling statistics regarding clinical negligence by NHS doctors.

The study, published in the British Medical Journal Quality and Safety Publication, found 19 per cent of the 1,000 UK doctors questioned have had direct contact with an incompetent or impaired fellow medical professional.

Despite this, however, the statistics showed one-third of those who had noticed a colleague being negligent decided not to report the incidents for fear of the consequences.

In addition, it was revealed that a quarter believed someone else was dealing with the issue, while one-in-seven said they thought nothing would be done about it even if they did report it.

Commenting on the findings of the report, medical negligence solicitor at Darbys Solicitors LLP Richard Money-Kyrle, said: "The fact that doctors are afraid to report concerns with colleagues means that we remain a very long way away from doctors accepting they have a duty to tell patients when mistakes have happened.

“To allow such a culture to continue is appalling. We all need a health service that works and which we can trust,” he added.

Mr Money-Kyrle went on to suggest a possible solution would be to enshrine a duty to tell patients when mistakes have been made or are suspected. Doctors could be required to record when they identify and report mistakes with the results used as part of an ongoing training programme.

The government is currently being lobbied to introduce a duty of candour, although this is being resisted.

Darbys Solicitors LLP is a leading UK law firm with expert solicitors providing a wide range of legal services. For more information on clinical negligence compensation claims, visit the company’s dedicated website:


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