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Case Study

Settlement for near fatal superbug infection at Guy's Hospital

We have recovered compensation for our client who nearly died following a hospital-acquired infection caused by a superbug at Guy's Hospital in London.

Alfred Nel almost died during an outbreak of pseudomonas that killed one woman and infected 18 others, including Alfred, at the hospital in late 2005.  

The bug is not as common as other hospital-acquired infections such as MRSA.

A senior doctor at the hospital told Alfred, a 44 year old plumber from Luton, that the almost fatal blood poisoning he developed had been caused by pseudomonas carried on medical equipment.

The bacteria was present on an unclean  microscope that doctors used in November 2005 when they removed a stent that had been used to treat kidney stones.

Alfred spent seven weeks in hospital undergoing treatment for the superbug infection. He was close the death.    

>> Read about the outbreak in the Guardian

Alfred was extremely unwell following his infection with pseudomonas, and has not made a full recovery.  He has been unable to return to his work as a plumber or to pursue sports. He has persistent pain. 

Edwina Rawson pursued a hospital infection claim for Alfred. 

Guy's Hospital initially took a surprisingly defensive approach to the case, but eventually the case was settled for more than half a million pounds, without the need to go to court.

Before the case, this superbug had had little publicity. Edwina was reported widely in the media as a result of this case, including appearing on TV. She has campaigned for better reporting of superbugs such as pseudomonas so that the full extent of the problem can be made clear.

After the case, Alfred and his wife Veronica said:

"We are only so thankful that our paths crossed. You have become a very special person in our hearts"

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