Expertise

Hugh solely undertakes claimant clinical negligence claims, whether against the NHS or private healthcare providers. He has substantial experience of spinal claims and the complications arising from such injuries, as well as with regard to issues arising from the provision of healthcare insurance cover, indemnification and recovery.

A significant part of Hugh’s practice includes substandard management of mental health conditions and injuries associated with the failure to protect individuals from harm, both within a hospital environment and in the community.

Recognition

Hugh is ranked in Chambers as a “star associate”. It has commented upon his “extensive experience of dealing with high-value spinal injury cases” and his “distinguished reputation for work on high-value and complex cases involving psychiatric disorders, spinal cord injury and brain injury”.  The 2018 edition notes that Hugh provides good client care and prepares his work to the highest standard.”

Experience

Hugh has acted in a diverse range of cases including:

  • MC v Maidstone & Tunbridge Wells NHS Trust, where an 80 year old claimant with a neck injury following a fall was rendered tetraplegic when a protective cervical spine collar was inappropriately removed. Capitalised damages of just under £1.3m were recovered.
  • AP v Lawes, where the claimant, employed by an international insurer in the City, recovered damages of £3.25m (including a £2m earnings loss component) following substandard abdominal surgery.
  • Szatmari v Oxford University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, where a young claimant was rendered paraplegic following spinal anaesthesia. Capitalised damages of more than £6m were awarded to pay for his healthcare and accommodation needs for life.

Hugh has acted in mental health claims involving care provided by general practitioners, by community mental health teams and at hospital. His experience includes:

  • PFZ v West London Mental Health NHS Trust, where the claimant, who was suffering from a severe mental illness was permitted to leave hospital in a vulnerable state. He attempted suicide, sustaining severe injuries that left him wheelchair dependent. The Court approved a substantial seven-figure settlement.
  • PBM v Barnet, Enfield & Haringey Mental Health NHS Trust, the claimant was a patient under the Mental Health Act 1983, but he was not recalled to hospital when his mental state further deteriorated.  PBM was awarded a six-figure damages settlement for multiple injuries subsequently sustained in an attempted suicide.

Career

Hugh has worked at Stewarts for more than 10 years, specialising in clinical negligence claims.  He started his career with a large regional firm, where he undertook a broad range both personal injury and clinical cases.

 

Accreditations and Memberships

Hugh is a member of the Association of Personal Injury Lawyers (APIL) and The Royal Society of Medicine. He is accredited APIL Litigator.

Hugh was elected secretary of the APIL Spinal Injury Special Interest Group in 2014 a post he had held continuously, before being appointed the group co-ordinator in August 2018.

Publications

Hugh has spoken at the GovToday Social Care Conference and has both chaired sessions and spoken at the APIL Advanced Brain and Spinal Injuries Conferences.

He is a contributing author to Lewis & Buchan on Clinical Negligence (8th Edition) which is due to be published in 2019.

His articles on the role of expert witnesses in healthcare litigation have been featured in The Lawyer and Lexology legal updates.

Personal

Hugh enjoys the most outdoor pursuits. He is often to be found cycling in the Surrey hills with his cycle club and, much less frequently, in a rowing boat.