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Breast Cancer Misdiagnosis Claims

Breast Cancer Screening Claims

If you’ve been diagnosed with breast cancer that was found late because of the NHS breast cancer screening appointment failure, you may be entitled to claim compensation.

All women aged 50 to 70 are entitled to breast cancer screening every three years.

From 2009 to 2018 a serious computer error meant NHS England’s appointment booking system failed to schedule final screening appointments for around 450,000 women. Some of these women may have experienced late diagnosis of breast cancer leading to more difficult treatments and reduced life expectancy.

If your cancer has been diagnosed late, our medical negligence solicitors can help you claim compensation.

How Do I Know If I’ve Been Affected By The NHS Breast Screening Failure?

You should have received a letter from the NHS telling you if didn’t get your screening appointment.

However, if you were born between 1938 and 1950 there’s a strong chance you weren’t given an appointment and, if you haven’t received a letter then you should contact the NHS to find out if your appointment has still been missed. You should have received your final breast screening appointment between 2009 and 2018.

If you didn’t get the screening appointment that you were entitled to and have since been diagnosed with breast cancer then you may be able to claim compensation.

How Could My Health Be Affected By The Failure?

The screening error means your cancer may have been diagnosed later than it should have been. This could have caused a delay in your treatment, meaning you may have had to undergo more difficult or complicated treatment, such as a mastectomy or chemotherapy.

The consequences of delayed treatment can affect your quality of life, capacity to work, increase your future risk of cancer and, potentially, shorten your life span.

How Do I Claim Compensation For An NHS Breast Cancer Screening Error?

You could claim compensation if you can show that your breast cancer diagnosis was delayed because of the missed appointment, requiring you to have more extensive treatment and the possibility of long lasting or permanent effects upon your health.

While the Government is expected to offer you some compensation if you’ve been affected, we can help ensure you get the compensation you really deserve. As well as compensating you for the pain and suffering you’ve experienced, we’ll seek payment for the costs of any additional treatments you may need and the impact the late diagnosis has had on your quality of life.

How Would A Group Claim Work?

If enough women decide to claim, we may make your case as part of a group claim with other women who’ve also suffered as a result of the NHS failure. Group claims save time and legal costs and could give your claim a better chance of success against a large organisation like the NHS.

There’s often an agreed scheme in place to deal with group claims, especially when a claim involves the NHS. This means it’s important to have help from specialist solicitors at an early stage, so we can advise you about how to proceed, work with any other solicitors involved, and ensure you’re getting compensated fairly.

Can I Make A No Win No Fee Claim For A Breast Screening Failure Claim?

Yes. We can represent you in a medical misdiagnosis claim on a no win no fee basis, whether you bring an individual claim or one that is part of a group. This means you don’t pay anything if your claim is un successful* and, in this case, your opponent will pay most of your legal costs.

If no win no fee isn’t an option, then we could help you to bring your claim using legal expenses insurance, which is often included in home insurance plans. We can talk about the best way to pay for your claim on 0800 121 6567 or you can contact us online and we’ll get back to you.

How Long Would Claiming For A Breast Screening Failure Take?

It depends on how long it takes us to gather evidence and reach a settlement with the NHS, but claims like this often take a couple of years. We’ll keep you updated at every stage of your claim and always work to get compensation for you as quickly as possible.

What Could Compensation Pay For?

Your compensation can help pay for:

  • The cost of private treatment if you need it, such as surgery or rehabilitation
  • Home care and assistance costs if you’re no longer able to take care of yourself without help
  • Loss of earnings if you’ve had to leave work temporarily or permanently.

We could help you access many of these services through our partnerships with leading charities and private medical providers who specialise in supporting people dealing with cancer.

We’ll also seek compensation for any pain and suffering you’ve endured because of your delayed cancer diagnosis.

Why Choose Us

Our medical negligence solicitors have a strong track record of helping people make delayed diagnosis claims against NHS and private doctors. We know how to value your claim, making sure you’re fairly compensated for what you’ve been through and that you’ll have the resources available so you can make the best recovery possible.

As one of the largest personal injury law firms in the country, we have the expertise and resources to manage large group claims and our solicitors have successfully secured compensation in high profile claims against the NHS.

Beyond compensation, we can help you access quality private medical treatment and support from award winning charities. Above all, we’ll put you and your family first throughout your claim.


Speak to our experts Sallie Booth, Natalie Truman or Grace Kelway about your breast cancer screening claim on 0800 121 6567 or get in touch online and we’ll call you back.

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Breast Cancer Screening Claims - More Information
    • Can I Make A Claim On Behalf Of A Loved One Who Has Died?
    • The Government does not believe any women have died directly as a result of the error. However, if a loved one who has died was diagnosed later than they should have been (whether or not they died of breast cancer) you may still be able to claim compensation on their behalf.

      The Government should contact you if they think your loved one didn’t receive an appointment because of the computer failure.

      Call us on 0800 121 6567 to talk about your loved one’s case to see if you can make a claim.

    • Is the NHS Breast Screening Error Fixed?
    • The Government has said that the appointment booking system has now been fixed and that women will receive all of the breast screening appointments they’re entitled to.

    • Can I Join An Existing Group Claim?
    • Yes, if you have a case for compensation for a breast screening error then you could join an existing group claim.

      Making a group claim makes it easier for us to negotiate a settlement with the NHS for all of the women affected as we can set up a clear process for paying compensation. This avoids having to fight each case individually and it also reduces legal costs for you.

    • Who’s Responsible For The Error?
    • We don’t know yet which body has responsibility over the IT system, but your claim is likely to be dealt with by either NHS Resolution or Public Health England.

Irwin Mitchell is a firm of the highest integrity that will work for the client to provide an excellent, compassionate service from beginning to end."

Vivian, client

Frequently Asked Questions

What Is Delayed Or Missed Diagnosis?

Delayed or missed diagnosis, also known as misdiagnosis, is when doctors or medical professionals diagnose your illness later than they should have done. It’s considered a type of medical negligence. You can claim for a delayed diagnosis if you can show that it has harmed your health and wellbeing.

Misdiagnosis may lead to:

  • Complex and risky medical treatment such as operations
  • Shortened life expectancy
  • Reduced quality of life
  • Inability to work
  • In some cases delayed diagnosis can be fatal.

In the case of cancer, early or late diagnosis is often one of the biggest indicators of how successful treatment and recovery will be, with significantly better outcomes likely if your cancer has been diagnosed early in its development. Read more about cancer misdiagnosis claims.

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What’s A Group Litigation Order And Will You Use It In My Case?

A Group Litigation Order (GLO) allows related compensation claims to be managed together in Court. It’s not essential for a group claim but can help speed the process up.

A representative of the group must apply for the court to make a GLO. If the court decides that a GLO is suitable, it will set up a register for all the claims within the group and choose a cut-off date for additional claims to join the group. It will also appoint a lead solicitor to represent the group.

Although the Court is involved from the start, group claims with a GLO don’t always actually go to Court to be resolved – it’s sometimes possible to agree a compensation settlement out-of-court instead. Still, having a GLO will save time if the claim does need to be decided in Court.

You can find out about current Group Litigation Orders on the website. GLOs are also advertised when they are ordered by the Courts – information can usually be found in national newspapers and sometimes on social media as well.

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What Other Medical Negligence Group Claims Have You Brought?

We’ve represented many clients in group claims against the NHS in the past. These include blood transfusion claims in which we represented clients who had been given contaminated blood leading them to contract viruses such as hepatitis C and HIV.

We have represented patients in many group cases including claims against the breast surgeon Ian Paterson who performed unnecessary operations and against gynaecologist Mr Arun who used dangerous vaginal mesh implants on his patients.

Group claims can be made in any case where there are multiple people affected by medical negligence. They’re useful as they set up a clear process for compensation for each individual who’s been affected, providing guidelines for who is entitled to compensation and how much compensation they should receive.

You can talk to one of our experts about making a medical negligence claim on 0800 121 6567 or contact us online and we’ll call you back.

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Awards & Recognition

We're always proud to be recognised for the work we do for our clients and have been named as a leading firm in the latest legal guides - which provide information and recommendations about lawyers and law firms in the UK.

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We truly value and appreciate the feedback we receive from our clients, as we look to improve the services we offer on an ongoing basis.

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We work with a number of charities.

We know how important their work to raise awareness of the disease is and we’re proud of our support for cancer charities, both local and national.

Our close relationships with these charities mean that we’ll often work with them when planning your care package, using their specialist knowledge to find out what’s best for you.

Some of the charities we support include:

  • Macmillan Cancer Support
  • Breast Cancer Care
  • Cancer Research UK

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Our offices are located in major cities throughout the UK and have excellent transport links.

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To begin your claim for compensation, or ask any questions regarding personal injury claims, contact us today for a free consultation.

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