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Striking a balance: The professional viewpoint

Post date: 21/12/2017 | Time to read article: 1 mins

The information within this article was correct at the time of publishing. Last updated 14/02/2019

In this video MPS’s medicolegal experts talk about today’s litigious society, and how this impacts on doctors and the way they practise.

Key points:

  • In 2016/2017, the NHS spent £1.7bn on clinical negligence claims

  • The NHS will need £65bn for future clinical negligence costs, for claims arising from incidents that have already occurred

  • We live in a litigious society and there is more in the media about litigation and successful suing 
    Complainants often choose to pursue a claim instead of or as well as a complaint

  • Almost 90% of the public is concerned about the financial pressures currently facing the NHS

  • An increasingly litigious society also impacts on healthcare professionals

  • 88% of MPS members are increasingly fearful of being sued

  • For more than 70% of MPS members this fear has caused stress and anxiety and has impacted on their confidence in how they deal with patients

  • 84% of MPS’s GP members have ordered more tests or made more referrals due to the fear of being sued

  • Practising more defensively doesn’t always lead to improvements in medical practice; unnecessary tests or investigations are not in the best interests of patients and may use up limited NHS resources

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