HC Deb 10 March 2004 vol 418 cc1603-4W
Mr. Byers

To ask the Secretary of State for Health what the cost to the NHS in respect of(a) medical negligence cases and (b) other legal claims was in each year since 1992; and what estimate he has made of the potential costs arising from outstanding cases. [159817]

Ms Rosie Winterton

[holding answer on 8 March 2004]: Payments made for medical negligence and other legal claims in each year since 1996 are shown in the table. Information for the period 1992 to 1995 cannot be separately identified.

£ million
Medical negligence

in year payments

Other legal claims in

year payments/


1996–97 235 22
1997–98 144 23
1998–99 221 38
1999–2000 373 19
2000–2001 415 10
2001–02 446 4
Changes to accounting policies imposed by the HM Treasury over the years mean that these amounts are not directly comparable. Estimates of potential costs of outstanding cases:
(i) The estimated cost of settling all actual clinical negligence claims and incidents that have occurred but may not necessarily result in claims is £5.25 billion as at 31 March 2002.
(ii) The estimated cost of settling all other legal claims is £113 million as at 31 March 2002.
Medical negligence
NHS (England) Summarised Accounts 1996–97 to 2001–02 (the latest year published, the report for 2002–2003 is yet to be published)
Other legal claims
Health authority audited accounts 1996–97 to 1998–99
Health authority audited summarisation forms 1999–2000 to 2001–02
Primary care trust audited summarisation schedules 2000–01 to 2001–02
NHS trust audited summarisation schedules 1996–97 to 2001–02