LETTER : Medical negligence: suing for compensation, or just saying sorry?

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The Independent Online
Sir: I agree entirely with Polly Toynbee. We must try to stop the gravy train that views financial compensation as being the counter balance to feelings of being wronged - which is exemplified at its lowest level with the Citizens' Charter mentality that sets different levels of compensation for particular service failures.

There does remain a need to provide compensation for losses of income caused by accidents and illness. Such a system should not depend on the finding of fault and so remove the need for lawyers and litigation.

Encouraging personal insurance is one solution; perhaps the public expenditure spent on lawyers' fees and tortious levels of damages could be better spent on establishing a comprehensive, no-fault compensation scheme similar to the Criminal Injuries Compensation Scheme.


Dan Jaynes

Newcastle upon Tyne