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Litigation 'threatening NHS finances'

From BBC - September 7, 2017

The rising cost of litigation is threatening the financial health of the NHS in England, auditors are warning.

The National Audit Office says the bill for clinical negligence has quadrupled in the last 10 years, reaching nearly 1.6bn last year.

It is urging the government to do more to curb the costs.

But ministers say they are taking steps, pointing out moves have been made to limit lawyer fees as well as a swifter resolution for birth injuries.

The latter tends to attract the highest damages awards because of the lifelong care that is needed in the worst cases.

But the NAO said on their own these measures would still not be enough.

It said some trusts were already spending 4% of their income on clinical negligence, which was proving too much.

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