Whether it’s a relaxing family getaway, or if you’ve just started your backpacking trip around the world, you are certainly not immune to disaster. In other words, medical emergencies do occur and not only this, but they can accelerate into something that’s far worse in some situations.
As the title may have given away, what we are really referring to is medical negligence. In most countries, you are covered against the worst case scenarios and if something does happen, you do usually have a legal option to exercise afterwards.
However, to say that medical negligence is a minefield would be an understatement. The fact it’s worth billions of pounds in the UK says everything you need to know about its complexity, but as soon as you venture across the waters you need further answers. Here, through this guide, we’ll attempt to provide support to the main questions.
Are you able to make a medical negligence claim when you go abroad?
On the most part, you are well within your rights to make a claim when you go abroad.
If you are traveling to another EU country, it should probably go without saying that you immediately have a lot more protection.
European Law dictates that every member of the EU must have a compensation scheme available and if we were to compare this to the one that we are used to at home, it would be the Criminal Injury Compensation Authority. In short, these organizations will provide support to any person who needs to make a compensation claim.
Unfortunately, the situation is not quite as clear as you venture out of the EU, and it really will depend on the country you are visiting. Most countries also have their own set of standards but again, it would be unfair to generalize for each one.
It’s at this point that we should highlight one difference. While the laws are likely to be similar across nations, don’t be surprised to see a few differences. These differences or deviations might wreak havoc with a claim and while something might be deemed completely unacceptable in the UK and result in a claim, in another country it won’t. Even in the EU, you must stick to the standards set by the medical bodies in that country – it doesn’t matter what the NHS say.
What sort of claims procedure should you follow?
It’s probably already become clear that this is a complex system, which is why specialized companies like The Medical Negligence Experts are so sought after in relation to it.
The claims procedures can vary enormously although you will generally always need to rely on a solicitor who is proficient in Foreign Law to back your case. Most of the time these solicitors are able to touch base with representatives in the country in question, which can forego any language issues.
If you find the symptoms are not showing until you arrive home, it’s crucial you seek a doctor’s assessment in the UK as soon as they are evident. This acts as a key form of evidence and can be used by your solicitor when proceedings begin.