In a previous blog we explained that in August 2016 University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust (the Trust) commissioned the Royal College of Surgeons (RCS) to carry out an external review of their Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery (OMFS) service at Leicester Royal Infirmary. The RCS review team visited Leicester Royal Infirmary in November 2016 and then again following a further detailed review of patient records at the beginning of 2017.

As a result of the concerns raised by the RCS, the Trust immediately suspended all complex reconstructive cancer surgery of the oral cavity and oropharynx and this suspension remains in place until such time as the Trust can give assurance that the appropriate structures and processes are in place to re-open this type of surgery.

Following the suspension there was a second independent review into the concerns raised by the RCS. This involved independent Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons inviting people who had been treated by the OMFS to meetings to discuss their concerns. The expert reviewers confirmed the failings within the service that had been identified in the earlier report from the RCS and also identified that a number of patients came to harm as a result of the treatment that they received from the OMFS.

Have you been affected? Next steps.

We act for a rapidly growing number of clients who were treated by the OMFS; including clients where the Trust has not admitted to causing them any harm. In some cases where the Trust initially denied harm they have now changed their decision after having face-to-face discussions with our clients to discuss their concerns. Meetings between the Trust and patients are ongoing and we are now in regular correspondence with the Trust’s solicitors to develop a claims handling agreement to streamline the approach to resolving these claims.

We are solicitors experienced in group actions having acted as the lead solicitors for claimants in the cervical smear and Leicester epilepsy group actions. We are determined to work towards achieving fair and early settlements for our clients and we are hopeful that the Trust is also committed to doing the right thing and resolving these claims to provide all those harmed with the compensation they are entitled to.

Our specialist Clinical Negligence team has many years of experience in dealing with Maxillofacial surgery claims and group actions. If you, or a loved one has any concerns in relation to treatment that you have received from the Maxillofacial service of Leicester Royal Infirmary, please contact one of our national team:-

Jane Williams, Partner and National Head of Clinical Negligence (Leicester) on 0845 272 5724 or jane.williams@freeths.co.uk

Gemma Bedford, Associate (Leicester) on 0845 050 3282 or gemma.bedford@freeths.co.uk

Alicia Gill, Solicitor (Leicester) on 0845 077 9602 or alicia.gill@freeths.co.uk