NHS Accident At Work Claim Guide – How Do I Make An NHS Employee Injury Compensation Claim?

    As a worker in the NHS, you play an invaluable role in society. All staff are entitled under the law to work in a safe environment. This is an important right for everyone, especially NHS workers. Not just because what you do is important, but because those who depend on you need you to be safe and well. When an employer fails in their duty of care to their employees and allows them to suffer injuries or health problems because of an unsafe workplace, they could be liable to pay compensation, and that could lead to you having grounds to make an NHS workplace accident claim.

    This guide will take you through some of the information you need to know about making an NHS accident at work claim and how our personal injury solicitors can help you do it. If at any time you have any questions or would like to begin a claim, you can get in touch with our team of personal injury claim experts. You can find the information on how to contact them at the top of this page.

    Jump To A Section

    1. A Guide To NHS Employee Accident At Work Claims
    2. What Are NHS Employee Accidents At Work?
    3. NHS Duty Of Care To Staff
    4. NHS Workplace Accident Statistics
    5. Types Of NHS Employee Accidents At Work
    6. NHS Employee Slip And Trip Accidents
    7. NHS Employee Manual Handling Accidents
    8. NHS Employee Equipment And Hazardous Substance Accidents
    9. NHS Employee Accident At Work Claims Calculator
    10. Special Damages NHS Workers Could Claim For Accidents
    11. NHS Injury Allowance Claims
    12. Why Make An NHS Workplace Accident Claim With Us?
    13. No Win, No Fee NHS Employee Accident At Work Claims
    14. Start A Claim With Legal Helpline
    15. NHS Employee Accident Resources

    A Guide To NHS Employee Accident At Work Claims

    NHS workplace accident claims

    Working in the NHS carries with it certain hazards that may not be faced by workers in other sectors of the economy. But it also carries with it certain rights and protections as well. Like with any other employer, you have the right to seek compensation if you suffer an injury or a health problem that was caused by their negligence.

    This guide will inform you about how you can make use of that right. It will go over what some of the different grounds for making a personal injury claim against the NHS might be, what rights and protections you are entitled to for workplace health and safety in the NHS, and what kinds of damages and income support you may be entitled to and how these are calculated.

    We will also explain some of the benefits of working with Legal Helpline when it comes to making an accident claim, such as the free advice our team of personal injury claim experts can offer, the expertise of our panel of personal injury solicitors, and the financial benefits of making a No Win, No Fee claim. You will also find useful information and resources linked throughout this article, like this general guide to making workplace injury claims we have written here.

     

    What Are NHS Employee Accidents At Work?

    Some workplaces carry a greater risk of accidents, injuries and health problems. Working in the National Health Service is one of them. Hospitals carry the risk of different types of health and safety issues, which we will list and discuss in detail in this article. Sometimes risks can’t be avoided, and sometimes accidents can happen despite health and safety measures being in place. 

    This article is about cases in which you could make a compensation claim against the NHS for allowing you to come to harm through negligence towards health and safety. The NHS has a duty of care towards you as a staff member, and if they violate this duty of care and you suffer harm because of it, you could be entitled to claim compensation.

    NHS Duty Of Care To Staff

    All employees, regardless of who they work for, are protected under the Health And Safety At Work etc Act 1974. This is a piece of legislation that requires all employers in both the public and private sectors to do everything reasonably possible to identify the risk of harm and prevent injuries from occurring in the workplace. There are other specific pieces of legislation, but this statute represents the key principle of workplace health and safety in UK law—that the employer is ultimately responsible for the safety of their employees.

    The NHS outlines its own specific rules and regulations regarding workplace health and safety in this document. It specifies the workplace health and safety policies which both include and go beyond complying with the Workplace Health And Safety Act 1974.

    NHS Workplace Accident Statistics

    It is difficult to say definitively how common accidents and injuries are among NHS workers, although it is likely to be quite high. In a three year period between 2008 and 2011, 20,547 work-related injuries in the NHS were reported to the Health and Safety Executive. These include 2,057 sprained backs, 300 broken legs or broken arms, 50 skull fractures, five finger amputations and one case of blindness. The injuries reported to the HSE only include serious injuries—those causing the victim to take at least three days off work. Accidents less severe than this do not need to be reported. The HSE also estimates that 43% of the injuries that should have been reported to them were not officially recorded.

    The most common cause of injuries for staff working in the NHS is slips, trips, and falls. However, in the past two years, the second-place spot has been taken by assaults on staff members, incidents of which have sadly risen over the past few years.

    Overall the number of reported injuries has fallen somewhat over this period, though this may be due to under-reporting. Both Trade unions and NHS employment officers have alleged that some departments and hospital trusts within the NHS may be putting downward pressure on the number of reported workplace injuries in the NHS by discouraging staff members from taking the correct amount of time off work when they suffer injuries.

    You can read more about the reports of NHS staff accidents in the source below.

    Source

    www.nursingtimes.net/roles/nurse-managers/exclusive-nhs-nurses-suffer-more-than-8800-serious-industrial-injuries-in-three-years-30-08-2011/

    Types Of NHS Employee Accidents At Work

    As with nearly all workplaces, there are various types of injuries or health problems that NHS workers might be at risk of. However, there are also health and safety risks that are nearly unique to working in the NHS (and the healthcare sector in general). These risks include:

    • Slips, trips, and falls.
    • Being subjected to a physical assault
    • Developing mental health problems as a result of stress, overwork or bullying
    • Manual handling injuries while moving patients or equipment.
    • Injuries caused by faulty equipment or inadequate PPE
    • Exposure to or infection with biological or chemical hazards, such as the coronavirus (COVID-19)

    NHS Employee Slip And Trip Accidents

    Slips, trips, and falls can cause serious injuries. Failing to prevent them through proper maintenance of the hospital’s facilities could constitute a breach of the NHS’ duty of care.

    There are a number of failings that could potentially lead to slips, trips, and falls.

    • Failing to clear up spills and wet patches of floor
    • Failing to clear away rubbish, packaging, and wires that are loose on the floor.
    • Failing to keep carpets and linoleum in good condition or failing to replace flooring which is worn out or damaged.

    We have a general guide to making slip, trip and fall claims which you may find useful. You can read it here.

    NHS Employee Manual Handling Accidents

    NHS workers, particularly porters and nurses, will regularly be tasked with manual handling activities. This can include moving beds around hospital wards, transporting patients, moving patients around in their beds, and moving supplies such as oxygen tanks around. Manual handling can carry with it certain risks, such as;

    • Suffering muscular-skeletal injuries: such as pulling muscles or suffering sprains and strains.
    • Suffering injuries as a result of dropping items or having items fall on you.
    • Having collisions while moving beds and carts around.

    There are certain steps that the NHS could take to reduce the risk of NHS staff suffering injuries related to manual handling. These steps include:

    • Making sure all members of staff who are expected to perform manual handling are trained appropriately.
    • Not requiring staff members without manual handling training to perform such tasks.
    • Not requiring staff to perform manual handling tasks beyond their ability and physical strength.
    • Using machinery or lifting equipment wherever possible to perform lifting and moving.
    • Allowing regular breaks for staff and not requiring manual handling from them when they are fatigued.

    We have a general guide to manual handling injury claims which you may find useful, you can read it here.

    NHS Employee Equipment And Hazardous Substance Accidents

    Working in the NHS could expose certain staff to hazardous materials. Particularly biological materials from patients with infectious diseases, such as COVID-19. Materials that have been potentially contaminated should be disposed of safely, and you and your work colleagues should be given training and equipment to do so safely. 

    Between 2008 and 2011, 885 incidents involving biological agents likely to cause illness were reported among NHS staff. The majority of these incidents are believed to have been “needlestick” injuries caused by used needles or syringes. Many cases of being cut with contaminated instruments are only reportable when there is a risk of contracting viruses such as HIV or Hepatitis.

    Exposure to hazardous materials can occur because of a lack of appropriate and functioning equipment, for example, inappropriate equipment being used to store and move contaminated instruments, or a lack of appropriate Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) such as gloves.

    NHS Employee Accident At Work Claims Calculator

    You are probably keen to find out how much money you may be entitled to for your injuries. At this early stage, it’s difficult to say with certainty how much your claim could be worth. What we can do, however, is show you how your compensation would be calculated. 

    This table below is a compensation claims calculator. It shows a list of example injuries that might happen in an accident and the approximate value of the compensation that can be awarded for them. The figures in this table have been taken from the Judicial College Guidelines, a legal publication used by solicitors and the courts to value claims.

    If you’d like a more precise valuation relevant to your unique circumstances, then please call the number at the top of this page and speak to one of our friendly advisors.

    InjuryNotesCompensation
    Dermatitis (a)Pain and cracked skin on both hands, causing an impact on employment and mental health lasting for a prolonged period of time.£12,900 to £18,020
    Dermatitis (b)Dermatitis of one or both hands, settling after a period of treatment.£8,110 to £10,710
    Dermatitis (c)Short lived rashes on one or both hands.Up to £3,710
    Jaw fractures (I)Serious and multiple fractures requiring prolonged treatment and resulting in permanent effects, such as pain and difficulty eating and the risk of the onset of arthritis.£28,610 to £42,730
    Jaw fractures (ii)Serious fracture with permanent consequences, such as pain and difficulty opening the jaw.£16,860 to £28,610
    Jaw fractures (iii)Simple fracture which requires a full immobilisation, but from which a full recovery is made.£6,060 to £8,200
    Facial skull fractures (a)Le Fort Fractures of Frontal Facial Bones£22,350 to £34,480
    Facial skull fractures (b)Multiple fractures of multiple facial bones, resulting in some degree of permanent deformity.£13,970 to £22,470
    Toe injuries (a)Amputation of all toes.£34,270 to £52,620
    Toe injuries (b)Amputation of great toeIn the region of £29,380

    Special Damages NHS Workers Could Claim For Accidents

    In the previous section, we showed you a personal injury compensation calculator with potential payouts. This reflects just one part of a potential compensation package. It’s also possible to recover any financial costs or expenses incurred as a result of the injury. This form of compensation is known as special damages. Provided you can provide the paperwork (i.e. invoices, wage slips, receipts, tickets etc) to corroborate your stated financial losses and expenditures, you could claim compensation for:

    • Money lost from being unable to work (temporarily or permanently)
    • Money spent on medical care
    • Money spent on home and vehicle adaption
    • Money spent on receiving home care (including having people perform household chores which you are unable to do yourself)
    • Money spent on plans which you are subsequently unable to enact, i.e. holidays or concerts.

    NHS Injury Allowance Claims

    In addition to the compensation that you could claim for your injury, if you are employed by the NHS there is also a chance that you could be entitled to claim NHS injury allowance. If you take time off work due to an illness or injury caused by an accident or health and safety breach at work and you are on a phased return, then the NHS can top up your reduced earnings or sick pay for a period of up to 12 months. In successful cases, claimants may be entitled to claim up to 85% of their standard pay. You can read more about NHS injury allowance payments on the Royal College of Nursing website here.

    Why Make An NHS Workplace Accident Claim With Us?

    You have many options when it comes to making a claim, but we recommend working with us because of our depth of experience. When you work with us, you can rest assured in the knowledge that your solicitors will fight tooth and nail for the maximum level of compensation you could be entitled to. Having a good solicitor is important because making a claim can be time-consuming and complicated. You want to have an expert you can trust to handle the difficult aspects while you concentrate on getting better.

    Making a compensation claim can last for several months if not longer. You won’t be left out of the loop, however. With Legal Helpline, you will receive regular updates and have the ability to get in contact whenever you need an update. You can get all of this and more without the high legal fees that you might be charged by other solicitors firms, as all claims can be pursued on a No Win, No Fee basis.

    No Win, No Fee NHS Employee Accident At Work Claims

    If you are wondering about how you are going to be able to afford to pay the legal fees required to hire a solicitor, then Legal Helpline is a good choice for you. That’s because we offer No Win, No Fee agreements (also known as a Conditional Fee Agreement, or CFA) to all of the claimants who work with our panel of personal injury solicitors. No Win, No Fee claims are a way for you to reduce the financial risk of making a claim.

    If you sign a CFA with a solicitor from our panel, you will not have to pay any fees upfront, nor will you have to pay any fees during your claim either. And if your claim is unsuccessful, you will not have to pay any of the fees your solicitor has incurred in pursuing your case.

    If your claim is successful, your solicitor may seek a small contribution towards their costs. This is known as a ‘success fee’ and would be deducted from the compensation awarded at the end of the claim. Don’t worry, the success fee is legally capped and will be agreed with you before the claim begins.

    Start An NHS Workplace Accident Claim With Legal Helpline

    Call us today on 0161 696 9685, or arrange a phone call at a time that suits you with our online enquiry form. You can talk to one of the experts on our team about how your NHS workplace accident claim and find out more about how claims work and about whether or not you are eligible to make one. You can do this if you want to get started right away or if you still haven’t made up your mind. Either way, our team of legal experts will be happy to provide you with a free consultation and answer all of your questions.

    NHS Workplace Accident Claim Resources

    Here are some further resources on making an NHS workplace accident claim:

    Health And Safety Executive Website

     

    Guide by JY

    Edited by REG