Clinical Negligence Claims: A&E Funding Boost 'Misses The Point'

The government’s ¬£500 million pledge to struggling A&E departments – a move that could prevent medical negligence compensation claims – misses the point, a specialist has said.

Chief Executive for the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA) Tom Mullarkey said the best way to reduce pressure in hospitals would be to prevent accidents from occurring in the first place.

This would lessen the demand on the NHS, as people would no longer have to go to hospital, he pointed out. Reducing the number of A&E patients would not just reduce pressure in hospitals – it would also help healthcare facilities to avoid clinical negligence claims.

Mr Mullarkey pointed out that of the 22 million A&E attendances in 2011 to 2012, as much as 14 million were due to accidents, with recent years seeing a 5% annual increase in A&E visits.

“Prevention is far better than cure,” he argued, saying the UK could use its money in a more intelligent and sustainable manner than simply “never-ending spending on treatment”.

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