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Family awarded compensation after care service failure

A family from Surrey has won a claim against Surrey County Council and a local NHS trust after both bodies were deemed to have failed in their duty of care.

What happened?

A mother from Surrey, known only as Mrs D, complained about the level of care that her son received from the city council and from the Surrey and Borders Partnership NHS Trust between 2007 and 2011.

Her child, diagnosed with Asperger’s syndrome and obsessive compulsive disorder, left school in 2007. His mother struggled to cope with his ‘controlling and abusive’ behaviour.

Mrs D claimed that, during the following four years, her son did not receive an appropriate level of care and treatment, while the services which were provided were inadequate.

She also claimed that the lack of adequate care also resulted in the deterioration of her own mental and physical health, and she was unable to work due to a stress-related illness.

An investigation led by a local government ombudsman found that the NHS trust had committed a ‘service failure’, and found that there was ‘maladministration’ on behalf of Surrey County Council.

What was the outcome?

At a county council cabinet meeting, councillors admitted that the report made uncomfortable reading. The NHS trust was ordered to pay the Mother and Son £500 each, and Surrey County Council was ordered to pay them £2,500 each.

Dr. Jane Martin, of the local government ombudsman, said:

“Better communication with Mrs D [the mother] and better coordination
of services with a single point of contact would have lessened
the difficulty for Mrs D in pursuing services for her
son and reduced anxiety and distress.”

If you have been affected by medical negligence, and you would like expert advice, contact the Hampson Hughes Solicitors Medical Negligence Team today on 0151 242 1025 or email

Source: Surrey Mirror

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