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A delay in diagnosis can seriously hamper recovery prospects for a patient.
Unfortunately, a delay in treatment at any point could cause further problems.
Ambulance delays can be a major reason for a delay in diagnosis and delays in access to the correct treatment.
Ambulance delays can result from arriving late to an incident, either due to traffic conditions or increased demand, to paramedics not being able to admit their patients to hospital wards due to a lack of beds. A lack of beds in hospital can often be down to ‘bed blocking’ where someone, often an elderly patient, is deemed well enough to leave hospital care but cannot be discharge to a safe environment and so remains in hospital.
Indeed, the East Midlands Ambulance Service cited an increase in ambulance call outs and A&E attendees together with a lack of hospital beds is why, in the period from January 2018 to September 2019, saw 12.8% of calls assigned Category Two, with over an hour response time.
The national standard for Category Two response times is that at least 9 out of 10 calls are responded to within 40 minutes. Category Two classification does not include calls that are considered life threatening but are still an emergency e.g. heart attacks, stroke, sepsis.
Other reasons for a delayed diagnosis can be down to difficulties in getting an appointment with your GP, not receiving urgent referrals and treatment or just being put on a waiting list.
The medical negligence solicitors at Blackwater Law have extensive experience in dealing with delayed diagnosis claims and can offer free initial advice to anyone who feels they have suffered from a delayed diagnosis which has caused harm that could have been avoided if treatment had been received at the correct time.