A diminishing number of clinical negligence lawyers can mount an effective claim today compared to 30 years ago, as Richard Barr illustrates

The date: June 1989. Katie was lying in a hospital bed. Unconscious.

Just four years old, she was not expected to live. A few days earlier she had been so badly neglected by another hospital that an expert later described it as the worst case of negligence he’d ever seen.

Minor concussion following a fall had turned into a catastrophic injury – all because the first hospital failed to scan her for a day and a half.

And when the doctors eventually found a subdural haematoma – a bleed on the brain – they tried to manage it themselves, making things ten times worse.

Katie was in a coma for several weeks but her mother never gave up hope. She never left Katie’s side and continued to talk ...

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