Compensation does not change the way that families handle severe medical conditions
With the news that the family of Mark Thomas have been given £3.2million in compensation for doctors not recognising that Mark had meningitis. The doctors delayed the diagnosis meaning that he has been left with brain damage. This can not be apologised for enough through money or anything else. Is it right to handle the effects that misdiagnosis and delayed diagnosis with compensation as with this case?
No other way
There is no other way to offer families a form of strength or power in the lives of their family member. With the case of Mark Thomas, he now needs to be constantly cared for, with this money the family can hire help and can get the best possible help for his condition. This may also mean that the family can choose to go with private medical services that may be more focused on their individual case.
There is no other form of apology that the family could recieve which would mean that they could look after their son any differently. This is the case with all misdiagnosises that have the extreme consequence on a life as with Mark Thomas. Misdiagnosis or delayed diagnosis can be traumatising no matter what the effect is and compensation means that families and patients have the ability for better care through the money that they are given.
Does not change anything
Although nothing can be done about the delayed diagnosis of Mark Thomas, and the same for misdiagnosis or other delayed diagnosises, compensation does not bring back any time or help the families in any way. As a result of the late diagnosis of meningitis Mark Thomas has incurred brain damage that will effect him for the rest of his life [[http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/hereford/worcs/8378847.stm]]. The family have been given £3.2million but have stated that "The money is going in a trust so it's there for him in the future, when me and his father are not here to look after him. I know he will be all right and he will be taken care of, but it doesn't mean anything. I have got my son but it's not the way I wanted it." [[http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/hereford/worcs/8378847.stm]].
The money will help the family but it does not change the circumstances that they have found themselves in. Everybody makes mistakes but surely the doctors that misdiagnosed Mark should be personally looked into why this happened and they should be involved in as much as they can to help the family and Mark to gain back the basic life skills that he has lost.
Cannot put a value on life
You cannot put a value on life and when this life is damaged, whether temporarily of permenantly, the consequences are severe. Offering compensation for mistakes, that do happen and are just human error, can not place the right value on the loss that families and patients get from such traumas.
The compensation that Mark Thomas received of £3.2million is a life changing amount of money yet it can not bring back the life that he used to have or the son that his family used to know. This value that has been put on the brain damage that he has incurred merely places a high amount of sympathy for the family from the NHS and those who diagnosed him late. With this it seems that there should have been more done at the time when the family protested about their supposed 'time wasting' [[http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/hereford/worcs/8378847.stm]]. It will mean that Mark can be provided for and cared for throughout his life but his life will never be the same and no amount of money could change this.
What do you think?