Claimant was receiving treatment by peripherally inserted central catheter into his arm in the community. He had regular visits by district nurses and during a routine visit the line snapped with four inches protruding from the crease at the elbow. The nurse taped the line and arranged for an ambulance, faxing the notes to the Defendant hospital where he arrived at around midday. Due to other urgent admissions however attempts at surgical removal of the line were not made until the following morning. Attempts at removal under local anaesthetic were unsuccessful and Claimant required hospital admission. Removal was eventually achieved under general anaesthetic but Claimant developed clostridium difficile during his hospital admission.
Claimant alleged negligence in delaying treatment which allowed the line to migrate causing a need for extensive surgery and prolonged hospital stay during which he developed clostridium difficile. Liability disputed; Defendant submitted the delay had occurred due to other patients requiring more urgent treatment. The Claimant was more susceptible to clostridium difficile as he had been taking oral antibiotics prior to admission.
Out of court settlement: £4,000 (estimated General Damages £3,600).