Hospital Settlement for Failure to Diagnose Meningitis

Mark Thomas has just been awarded £3.2million in a hospital settlement for failure to diagnose meningitis, a error which was compounded by the fact that the victim was turned away from Walsall Manor Accident and Emergency Department and his parents were admonished at the time for ‘misusing the emergency services’.  It was a second opinion five days after the initial hospital visit that determined that Mark Thomas had meningitis.

In this tragic case, Mark Thomas has been left suffering from brain damage and no short term memory and will never be able to work or live without a carer. The NHS trust involved has apologised to his family.

Meningitis is inflammation of the protective membranes surrounding the brain and spinal cord. Some of the common symptoms include headaches, neck soreness, fever, confusion, vomiting, and light or noise intolerance. Meningitis is  a life-threatening condition and has a high mortality rate if untreated and delayed treatment can result in brain damage.  Wide-spectrum antibiotics are normally prescribed immediately, even before confirmatory tests are conducted.