New figures revealed by the Scottish Government indicate that the NHS in Dumfries and Galloway alone has paid out more than £2.5m in medical negligence compensation since 1996.
75 compensation claims have been made against the NHS in the region in just over a decade – the average payout per case is around £33,000. However, over £400,000 was paid out in 2000/1 to cover just two claims.
How do the Dumfries and Galloway payouts compare to the national statistics? According to BBC News, over the same period around £81m was paid out by Scottish health authorities to just over 1900 medical negligence claimants.
In recent years, there has been a rise in the number of hospital- acquired infections such as MRSA and C Diff. In many cases, perhaps most famously in the case of Leslie Ash, those suffering from these "super bugs" are able to prove that the hospital was negligent, either in its failure to adopt a correct hygiene routine or in misdiagnosis and incorrect treatment.