Medical Record Collation is a leading medicolegal agency specialising in collating, sorting, and indexing medical records for UK-based clinical negligence and personal injury law firms. As a PAGE-accredited firm, we uphold the highest standards in the industry, ensuring that medical records are meticulously organised and prepared for medicolegal reporting and trial.
The Value Proposition of Pagination Firms: The introduction of the LDFRC scheme underscores the need for cost-effective solutions in the clinical negligence claims process. Firms like ours play a pivotal role in this ecosystem. By outsourcing the collation of medical records to specialised agencies like Medical Record Collation, law firms can achieve significant cost savings. Our expertise allows us to undertake this intricate work at a fraction of the cost compared to having in-house legal professionals or medical experts do it.
The Critical Role of Pagination and Our Commitment to Improvement: Medical record pagination is a detailed and intricate process that plays a pivotal role in the legal sector, especially in clinical negligence claims. Our process goes beyond merely assigning page numbers. We sort records by type, chronology, and source, remove duplicates, create detailed indexes, and digitise records for easy sharing and searching. This meticulous approach:
- Ensures that all parties have a coherent set of records, facilitating smoother communication and understanding.
- Reduces the time and resources spent by medical experts, parties, and courts in navigating through records.
- Complies with Data Protection Laws by ensuring that records don’t contain third-party privileged information.
For law firms and solicitors, this streamlined presentation ensures that critical details aren’t overlooked. For the claimant, a properly paginated bundle ensures that their medical history is presented accurately and comprehensively, increasing the likelihood of a fair assessment of their claim.
At Medical Record Collation, we recognise the evolving landscape of the legal sector and the continuous push towards efficiency and cost-effectiveness. We are committed to regularly reviewing and improving how we carry out our work. Our dedication to streamlining our service ensures that we operate with the utmost efficiency, providing value while maintaining the lowest cost possible. This commitment not only benefits our direct clients but also contributes positively to the broader legal ecosystem, ensuring that claimants receive quality service without undue financial burden.
Equality Impact Considerations: One of the fundamental principles of the legal system is ensuring access to justice for all, irrespective of their socio-economic status. If pagination fees are not recoverable as a separate disbursement, it could deter solicitors from taking on certain cases, especially those that involve extensive medical records. This could disproportionately affect claimants from marginalised communities or those with complex health histories, as their cases might be seen as too costly or time-consuming without the assurance of recoverable pagination fees.
The consultation does make provisions for protected parties (people without mental capacity) and children. However, the process of collating and organising medical records might be even more crucial for these groups. Properly paginated and organised records can expedite the legal process, ensuring that vulnerable claimants aren’t subjected to prolonged legal battles. By not ensuring the recoverability of pagination fees, the system might inadvertently be placing an additional burden on these already vulnerable groups.
Furthermore, if pagination firms are not adequately compensated for their services, they might be less inclined to take on cases that involve records in multiple languages or from various international medical institutions. This could indirectly discriminate against claimants from ethnic minority backgrounds or those who have received medical care abroad.
Lastly, if pagination costs aren’t recoverable, solicitors might pass on these costs to the claimants. This could deter individuals from lower socio-economic backgrounds from pursuing legitimate claims, fearing the financial burden.
To ensure that the LDFRC scheme doesn’t inadvertently create barriers or inequalities, it’s crucial to consider the broader implications of not making pagination fees a recoverable disbursement. By ensuring that these fees are recoverable, the scheme can uphold the principles of justice, fairness, and equality.
Proposal for the LDFRC Scheme: While the provision of a paginated bundle of records is a requirement under the LDFRC scheme, the recoverability of pagination fees as a separate disbursement is not currently proposed. This presents a significant oversight.
We strongly advocate for the inclusion of pagination costs as a separate disbursement under the LDFRC scheme, akin to expert reports and ATE insurance premiums. Without this provision, there’s a genuine risk that medical records won’t be collated to the necessary standard, leading to inefficiencies, misunderstandings, and potential delays in the claims process. Furthermore, the absence of properly paginated records could increase the time and costs for medical experts and legal professionals, as they would need to manually sort through unorganised records, potentially leading to increased costs for claimants and a prolonged resolution process.
To ensure the highest standards of pagination and to control costs effectively, we propose that firms planning to use the LDFRC scheme should be obligated to use firms accredited by PAGE (Pagination Accreditation Group for Experts). PAGE accreditation ensures that pagination firms adhere to rigorous standards, providing consistent, high-quality service to the industry. By mandating the use of PAGE-accredited firms, the LDFRC scheme can ensure that medical records are collated to the highest standards while also controlling costs.
Conclusion: As the LDFRC scheme seeks to streamline and make the clinical negligence claims process more cost-effective, it’s imperative to recognise and accommodate the essential services provided by pagination firms. By ensuring that pagination costs are recoverable, the scheme will uphold the principle of cost-effectiveness without compromising on the quality and clarity of medical records.
For more insights into our services and the value we bring to the clinical negligence claims process, we invite you to visit our website at www.medicalrecordcollation.com.
We appreciate the opportunity to provide our perspective on this matter and are available for further discussions or clarifications.
Do you have any data on the prevalence of disbursements for claims in this value band that could be relevant to the proposed way forward?
We reviewed a sample of 55 cases we have worked on in the last 9 months. Of these, in 5 cases the solicitor had an estimated the quantum to be at or below £25,000.
The table below outlines details of each of the 5 cases the number of pages of medical records associated with each case (which has an impact on the time taken) and the total number of hours spent by our sorters and chronologers.
|Quantum||Details of case||Pages of records|
|19,000||Pressure sore of elderly patient with complex medical history.||8,572|
|20,000||Brain injury at birth.||2,871|
|20,000||The claimant had to be cannulated for fluid and this cannular flipped out of the vein and into the tissue the intravenous fluid went into the tissue in their arm. The flipped cannular caused extravasation and scolded their right arm from the inside out the injury is from their right wrist up to this right elbow.||501|
|20,000||Failure to spot low renal levels. Blood tests taken and not evaluated properly until three years later. In November, were told that they will require dialysis in their 50’s and is now receiving monthly blood tests.||648|
|25,000||Misdiagnosis of heart failure for patient with complex medical history resulting in death.||2,544|