Martin Beckford, Health Correspondent of the Telegraph, writes that the number of patients accusing their GPs of medical negligence has increased sharply over the past year – http://bit.ly/jVkYw4 .
The Medical Defense Union, which provides insurance to more than half of Britain’s family and hospital doctors, said it had opened almost 20 per cent more files on GPs in 2010.
It said claims were up overall but the “most marked” rise was in general practice.
The most common accusation (in 60 per cent of cases) concerned late or wrong diagnosis, along with failure to refer to specialists (15 per cent) and errors in medication (10 per cent).
In total, 13 cases made by patients involved claims of more than £1million last year, up from just one case in 1995.
Jill Harding, head of claims at the MDU, said: “While we have long been aware of the rising costs of compensation, the increase in the number of claims notified to us is a more recent trend which follows a period of relative stability in this area.