Centre for Spine Studies and Surgery, Queens Medical Centre, West Block, D Floor, Derby Road, Nottingham, NG7 2UH, UK, email@example.com.
The objective of this study was to evaluate the overall incidence and total burden of successful litigation relating to the management of spinal disease across the National Health Service (NHS) in England.
The study design comprised a retrospective review of the NHS Litigation Authority (NHSLA) database, retrieving all successful claims relating to spinal disease between 2002 and 2010-a total of 235 (144 acute, 91 elective).
The general trend for successful claims with relation to spinal surgery has actually been decreasing steadily over the last few years. The total value of these claims during the period was £60.5 million, comprising £42.8 million (£28.6 million relating to acute diagnoses, £16.1 million for elective) in damages and £17.7 million in legal costs (31% relating to NHS legal costs, the remainder claimants costs).
Spinal litigation remains a source of significant cost to the NHS. The complexity of resolving these cases is reflected in the associated legal costs.