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Woman To Sue Over Breast Blunder


Active Member
Sep 10, 2004
A woman whose breast was removed after she was wrongly diagnosed with cancer has branded a £44,000 compensation offer 'an insult' and is to sue the health authority responsible.

Marjory Patterson, 52, had a healthy breast removed by surgeons after being told she needed a mastectomy.

But doctors at NHS Highland's Raigmore Hospital in Inverness later admitted that they had been looking at another patient's tissue sample and had made a mistake.

Mrs Patterson, of Alness in Ross-shire, was offered £44,000 compensation by the hospital, but said the amount was an "insult" and now plans to take her case to the Court of Session.

In a statement today, Dr Roger Gibbins, chief executive of NHS Highland, said: "This was a tragic case where a mistake was made.

"We apologised to Mrs Patterson as soon as the mistake came to light and have been trying to negotiate a settlement.

"We would like to negotiate a reasonable settlement figure with Mrs Patterson to avoid unnecessary court action. It is essential that we learn from this mistake."

He added that changes had been put in place at Raigmore Hospital to reduce the risk of such a mistake happening again, including a review of the circumstances surrounding the case.

"As a result of this review a number of changes have taken place and procedures have been tightened up," he said.

Reacting to NHS Highland's statement this afternoon, Mrs Patterson's husband, David, said: "I don't think they will come up with what we are looking for - they are very, very biased and very cheeky and don't seem to understand what we have been through.

"My wife is a nice person who didn't deserve this. We are not talking about £44,000, we are talking £200,000 or £300,000, and I don't think they will come up with that kind of money. It will go to court."

This is shocking
I can't even begin to imagine what this lady is going through. It probably was a genuine mistake, but these are people we entrust our lives with. Scary thought.