Nurse wins £345,000 for back pain
James Meikle, health correspondent
Wednesday June 6, 2001
A former staff nurse has been awarded £345,000 for the back pain she received while working in a hospital which allegedly lacked suitable equipment to help move patients.
Carmel Commons, 42, is among the first nurses to win a case involving repetitive strain rather than injury from a single incident, said her solicitor, who suggested the NHS was wasting money by not taking sufficient care of its staff.
Ms Commons was retired from Queen's medical centre, Nottingham, in 1996, after suffering pain from 1994. She was awarded the damages at Nottingham county court last month.
Richard MacMillan, her solicitor, said: "Each year thousands of nurses complain of back pain. Many of them are retired early after years of training and experience ... this is made worse by the lack of proper equipment, in particular height adjustable beds."
Other nurses had made similar claims, some of which were settled, but employers had been able to impose "gagging clauses".
Isn't that like $600k? And the powers that be still say that Nursing isn't unhealthy.
Jun 7, '01
Hi. I had posted a little while back that when I saw the Senate hearing on CSPAN, it was mentioned how dangerous our jobs are. Hooray for this nurse. I would feel some vindication in getting this award considering I feel underpaid anyway.
Jun 8, '01
This is an interesting article. However I got a feeling it has no bearing on USA nurses whatsoever. Any work related injury in the US is covered by the laws of the state where the injury occured. I am not a lawyer so I can't be more specific than that. I will say I got a feeling that these state laws limit liabilty in a way that a suit like this could not take place. A third party could be sued in MY state. Take for instance if you were injured by a piece of faulty equipment at work and could prove that the manufacture of the equipment was neglegent you could sue them for those amts.
Jun 8, '01
Hi. Oramar you're right about the laws in the U.S. I would imagine that over the life of a nurse's work disability in this country that they could get as much as $600K? So does this mean that there are no national worker protection laws under socialized medicine?
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