Medical Negligence

In Hong Kong, medical negligence is becoming more commonplace. If you have been injured and the injury was caused by negligence of medical staff (such as doctors or nurses), you may be able to claim compensation against the negligent medical practitioners and/or the relevant clinics and hospitals.

Common Examples of Medical Negligence:

  • Conducting an uninstructed surgery 
  • A bone fracture unidentified 
  • Infections while in hospital 
  • Harm brought upon by incorrectly prescribed medicines 
  • Improperly conducted surgery 
  • Improperly administered anesthesia causing patient to have awareness during surgery 
  • Improperly conducted surgery causing brain damage or loss of memories 
  • Serious clinical misdiagnosis 
  • Improperly conducted surgery causing vision impairment
  • Improperly conducted surgery causing skin damage
  • Improperly conducted surgery causing permanent damage to the body 

What to do if you've encountered medical negligence?

In medical negligence cases, unlike other accident claims, the doctors and medical institutions involved are more inclined to deny liability due to possible concerns about reputation. Usually, ample proof of negligence and causation are required before a settlement is possible.

Therefore, if you have unfortunately encountered medical negligence, you should keep all evidence, including a detailed account of all symptoms and pain of your body, and you should instruct a lawyer as soon as possible. Your lawyer will act on your behalf and seek and consolidate medical records and notes from the relevant doctors and medical institutions.

In appropriate cases, your lawyer may advise and assist you to consult an independent medical expert to analyse and consider whether negligence was involved in the relevant treatment, so as to better advise you on whether or not you have a valid claim against the relevant doctor and the medical institution. 

Generally speaking, the evidential threshold for a medical negligence case under common law is that the claimant (patient) must provide evidence to prove that the alleged negligent medical treatment falls short of or deviates from accepted standards of medical practice, and that it causes the bodily harm of the claimant. Besides, the claimant has to prove that a competent doctor would not have made such a mistake if that doctor conducted the same medical procedure.