Jargon buster: NHS Litigation Authority (NHSLA)

What is it?

The NHSLA is a special health authority responsible for handling negligence claims made against NHS bodies in England. This is done through five schemes, three of which relate to clinical negligence claims, while two cover non-clinical risks, such as injury to staff and visitors. While only NHS bodies are eligible for membership, other centres treating NHS patients may benefit from the Clinical Negligence Scheme for Trusts (CNST) cover via their referring PCT.

What other services does it provide?

The NHSLA includes a risk management programme to help raise standards of NHS care and its Human Rights Act Information Service monitors human rights case law on behalf of the NHS.

Since April 2005, the NHSLA has handled family health service appeals. Since August 2005 it has co-ordinated equal pay claims on behalf of the NHS.

How many negligence claims does it process?

In 2004/5, the NHSLA received 5,609 claims of clinical negligence and 3,766 claims of non-clinical negligence against NHS bodies. A total of £502.9 million was paid out in connection with clinical negligence claims in 2004/5.

How can I find out more?

For more information including downloadable fact sheets, visit the website: www.nhsla.com/home.htm.

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