Pursuing legal action against doctors is difficult, yet successful cases have established medical negligence and led to patient compensation.
In Thompson v Haasbroek (2009) in Australia, the plaintiff claimed the doctor’s delayed diagnosis of a neck condition caused harm. The patient’s neck pain wasn’t promptly investigated, resulting in delayed treatment. As a result, the patient became a quadriplegic. The trial lasted three weeks, involving expert testimonies.
Proving direct causation was challenging. Experts assessed the hypothetical scenario of an earlier diagnosis and its impact.
The court ruled in favour of the patient, emphasizing early diagnosis could have improved outcomes. Compensation was awarded for injuries, medical expenses, and related costs.
This case underscores the gravity of delayed diagnosis and the complexities of establishing causation, especially with evolving medical conditions. The patient’s pre-existing conditions factored into reduced compensation, resulting in a $290,542 award.