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Significant increase in amount of claims paid by NHS

19 August 2009

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Figures have revealed an 11% rise in the number of claims against the NHS for clinical negligence.

There was a continuing rise in the amount paid out by the NHS for claims, according to information uncovered by the Conservatives.

The period of 2008/09 “saw a significant increase in the number of claims received, compared with the same period last year,” according to the annual report of the National Health Service Litigation Authority.

It continued: “Clinical claims rose by more than 11% and non-clinical claims by over 10%.

“The preceding five years had seen a largely static intake of new claims and we have not been able to identify any single factor that might have precipitated the rise.”

The report revealed that less than 4% of the 8,885 clinical and non-clinical claims made in 2008/09 will go to court. However, it revealed an increase in the amount the NHS spent in the last three years settling the claims.

In 2006/07, the NHS spent £613 million, rising to £661 million in 2007/08 and £807 million in 2008/09.

The report said: “Total claims expenditure across all schemes in 2008/9 increased by over 22% compared with the same period last year.”

Copyright © Press Association 2009

National Health Service Litigation Authority