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  1. ITV Report

Compensation costs Cumbria's NHS trusts millions

Millions have been paid out in compensation. Photo: PA

Cumbria's NHS trusts have paid out more than £50,000,000 in compensation to patients over the last six years.

The Medical Defence Union released the figures, which are broken down as follows:

£30m
North Cumbria University Hospitals NHS Trust
£26m
University Hospitals of Morecambe Bay - NHS Foundation Trust

Patients who have been negligently harmed need to be properly compensated so they know their health and social care needs will be met, but the NHS cannot continue to pay claims at this increasing rate."

– Dr Michael Devlin, Medical Defence Union

But North Cumbria University Hospitals NHS Trust says the figures don't give an accurate representation of how many incidents have occurred over the time period:

The Trust is always focused on improving patient safety and this has been demonstrated through the continued reduction in our mortality rate. In addition to this, compensation claims are reducing overall and we are committed to openly reporting on our progress against our safety improvement plan.

The NHS Litigation Authority (NHS LA) leads on compensation payments on behalf of all NHS Trusts. A number of these payments were made a significant time after the incident occurred and therefore cannot be seen as a measure of how many incidents have occurred during this time period.”

– Spokesperson for North Cumbria University Hospitals NHS Trust