Blackpool Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust Data Breach Compensation Claims Guide – How Much Compensation Can I Claim? – Amounts For Blackpool Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust Data Breach
My Data Was Involved In A Blackpool Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust Data Breach, Could I Claim?
The information in this article is about how to make Blackpool NHS Trust data breach compensation claims. The types of data breach we’re talking about are those that take place when the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) rules have been broken and information about you is leaked to unauthorised parties.
The GDPR came into British law when the Data Protection Act 2018 was enacted. Its purpose is to provide individuals with more say over who has access to their data and who can access it. The regulation places a duty on data controllers (such as the NHS) to ensure they have good processes and systems in place to keep your personal information safe.
In most cases, your data is only ever accessed by organisations you’ve approved, but when mistakes happen, and your information is leaked, you may decide to seek compensation for any harm caused.
Legal Expert is here to support you if you do decide that you’d like to make a medical data breach claim. Our team of specialists can provide a no-obligation telephone assessment of your case and offer free legal advice on how to proceed. If the claim appears to have a chance of success, you could be referred to one of our experienced solicitors. If they agree to take the claim forward, they’ll work for you on a No Win No Fee basis.
To find out more about how we can help, please call us on 0800 073 8804 today. Otherwise, you can read more about claiming for a Blackpool Hospital data leak in the rest of our guide.
Select A Section
- A Guide To Blackpool Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust Data Breach Claims
- What Is A Blackpool Hospitals NHS Trust Data Breach?
- Health And Social Care Data Breaches And The GDPR
- Examples Of How Healthcare Providers Could Breach Data Protection Regulations
- ICO Data Breach Fines Against Blackpool NHS Foundation Trust
- What Is An ICO Complaint And How Do I Make One?
- What Could I Claim For If My Personal Medical Data Is Breached?
- How Much Could You Be Awarded In Compensation For A Data Breach?
- No Win No Fee Blackpool Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust Data Breach Claims
- Finding A Data Breach Claim Expert
- Contact A Data Breach Claim Solicitor
- Extra Medical Claims Resources
A Guide To Blackpool Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust Data Breach Claims
Without realising it, you probably agree to allow your data to be used on a daily basis. That’s because when you see a pop-up box appear on a website that you’re visiting for the first time, when you click on agree, you’ll probably be giving the website operator permission to use some of your data for tracking purposes or to make the website work better.
In an NHS scenario, the pop-up box is replaced by forms that you fill in when registering, signing for an operation, and in other scenarios. Usually, you’ll be choosing who can use your personal information and whether it can be shared with other parts of the NHS or other organisations. The main point of the GDPR is that the organisation who has asked for your permission can only use your data in the way you’ve agreed to.
In this article, we’ll consider when Blackpool NHS Trust data breach compensation claims might be required, provide examples of how a breach could occur and explain why you might be paid compensation. For your information, the time limit for data breach claims is 6-years (reduced to 1-year for breaches of your human rights).
Our advice is to start your claim as soon as you can because it will be much easier to discuss what’s happened and how you were affected in the months after the breach happened. Also, it will be easier for a solicitor to collect evidence to support your claim the earlier you begin.
A little later in this guide, we’ll look at the role the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) plays in investigating data breaches and will provide advice on whether you need to contact them about your case.
What Is A Blackpool Hospitals NHS Trust Data Breach?
It’s now time to explain what a data breach actually is. The GDPR definition of a data breach is:
- Where a breach of security causes the unlawful or accidental destruction, alteration, loss, unauthorised disclosure or access of personal data that’s been processed by an organisation.
Importantly, while a lot of data is stored electronically these days, it’s still possible for a data breach to happen with data that is recorded on paper as well. For instance, if your private medical notes were left unattended and were read by somebody who was not authorised to do so. Another example could be where a letter intended for you was sent to another patient’s address by mistake.
There are a number of different ways in which you might find out about a data breach. You might read about them in the press, a friend might tell you what’s happened or the NHS trust in question could inform you (which they’re obliged to do in certain circumstances). If you believe you’ve suffered harm because of a Blackpool Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust data breach and can prove their failings, why not contact Legal Expert for a free assessment of your case today?
Health And Social Care Data Breaches And The GDPR
The GDPR uses different roles to explain the different parties involved in collecting and storing your data. These include:
- A data subject: This is the individual whose data is being handled (a patient in this instance).
- The data controller: An individual, an agency or body who determines the means and purpose of data processing.
- A data processor: This is the person or organisation who carries out data processing on behalf of the controller.
The data processor has a number of principles which they need to adhere to under the GDPR, including:
- Any processing of data needs to be transparent to the data subject, fair and within the law.
- Personal information needs to be accurate and must be kept up to date.
- There needs to a legitimate purpose for processing data and the data subject must be told of this.
- Only the minimum amount of data should be processed to meet the processing objectives.
- Data can only be retained for the time specified at the time it was processed.
- The processing should be confidential and secure. This may mean data needs to be encrypted, for instance.
Also, the data controller has to be able to demonstrate compliance with the principles set out above.
We could assist you with Blackpool NHS Trust data breach compensation claims if you believe you’ve suffered harm and could help you claim compensation. Please let an advisor know how you found out about the breach, and they’ll assess your claim for free.
Examples Of How Healthcare Providers Could Breach Data Protection Regulations
Now it’s time to look at what can cause a data breach to occur. If you’ve read a high-profile case concerning a data breach in the news, then it’s likely to have been caused by cybersecurity issues. However, it’s probably far more common for these issues to be caused by human errors or, in some cases, deliberate acts.
Here are a few examples of what could lead to an NHS data breach:
- Where your information is sent in a letter, that was intended for you, to another patient.
- If staff leave their computer screens unlocked and an unauthorised person accesses your records.
- When a member of staff who has no medical reason to do so accesses your records.
- If the computer system is struck by a virus, malware or ransomware.
- Where documentation, like medical records, are left lying around and are read by unauthorised people.
- When personalised data is shared with organisations that you’ve not approved.
There is a chance that a data breach might never come to light (which could mean no harm has been caused). However, when an NHS trust does realise that a breach has happened which could put you at risk, they should let you know when it happened and explain which details were leaked.
ICO Data Breach Fines Against Blackpool NHS Foundation Trust
We’re now going to look at a data breach example involving the Blackpool Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust. While this data breach didn’t involve patient data, we’ve shown it because it demonstrates the power of the ICO to fine organisations who fail to adhere to the GDPR rules.
In this case, the ICO fined the NHS trust £185,000 for uploading the personal details of thousands of its staff on to the hospital’s website. The information had been collected as part of the trust’s plan to publish equality and diversity statistics on its website. It included national insurance numbers, disability status, pay scales, religious beliefs, sexual orientation and the dates of birth of the affected staff members. What the trust failed to notice was that the spreadsheets, when double-clicked, revealed hidden cells containing the personal data of over 6,500 of its staff.
Worryingly, the trust didn’t spot the mistake for ten months and it was another five months before they let staff know what had happened. In a statement, the head of the ICO said that the trust had “played fast and loose with the highly sensitive and private information.”
In all, the spreadsheets were visited 59 times, by 20 visitors and download on several occasions.
What Is An ICO Complaint And How Do I Make One?
As you’ve seen, the ICO are able to investigate potential data breaches and report on their findings, but is that the path you should follow? Well, in the first instance, you might want to put your complaint directly to the NHS trust who you believe have mishandled your information. They should adhere to the NHS complaints procedure and provide you with a formal response in due course.
If you are not satisfied with the trust’s findings, you could ask the ICO to step in and take a look at what happened. This needs to be done within a reasonable time as they won’t usually investigate claims which have taken too long to get to them. In general, it’s best to get in touch within around 3-months of your last meaningful contact with the NHS trust.
You should know, though, that even if the ICO found that the trust has caused a data breach, they won’t be able to award you any compensation. All they’re able to do is report their findings and fine an organisation for any mistakes. To be compensated, you’ll need to make a claim against the NHS trust yourself.
While this might mean a court case is required, it is sometimes possible for cases to be settled directly between the claimant and the NHS trust. If you decide to work with Legal Expert, and your case is accepted, your solicitor will review the claim and decide whether it’s necessary to involve the ICO or not. On some occasions, the ICO could provide a view on your case which your solicitor may find useful.
What Could I Claim For If My Personal Medical Data Is Breached?
Now we’re going to look at what can be included for Blackpool NHS Trust data breach compensation claims. In the next section, we’ll also look at how much might be awarded. A data breach claim will usually be made up of two main elements:
- Material Damage. This compensation covers financial losses that you’ve actually sustained as a result of the breach i.e. money stolen from your bank account.
- Non-material Damage. This is the compensation which aims to cover the psychological injuries and suffering that the data breach has inflicted on you.
Due to the fact that every type of compensation claim is different, and each person is affected differently, we won’t be able to tell you exactly what you’ll be able to claim for until your case has been thoroughly assessed by a solicitor.
For instance, the first thing the solicitor will consider is whether you’ve suffered any financial losses and, if you have, whether the losses will continue. For example, there could be a long-term effect on your ability to apply for credit if your personal data was used by an identity thief. Therefore, the solicitor will need to try and calculate a total loss to claim for.
Also, for non-material damage, the solicitor will need to obtain medical evidence which shows what effect the breach has caused on your ability to work, be educated or how anxiety, stress or depression have affected life in general. They may also need to look at how your relationships have been affected by the data breach.
The information above shows how complex a data breach claim can be and it’s the main reason we advise you to let one of our experienced solicitors help you claim. They’ll work hard to try and ensure you’re compensated fully for any harm that you’ve suffered.
How Much Could You Be Awarded In Compensation For A Data Breach?
To be eligible to make some claims, you have to prove that there has been some form of financial loss. However, in the case of Vidal-Hall and others v Google Inc , the Court of Appeal decided that data breach claims can be made even if no financial impact has resulted. Furthermore, the court decided that compensation should be settled in line with personal injury claims.
To give you an idea of how much compensation could be paid, we’ve listed data from the Judicial College in the table below. They maintain a set of guidelines which insurers, lawyers and courts reference when deciding compensation amounts.
|Injury Type||Severity||Compensation||Further Information|
|Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)||Severe||£56,180 to £94,470||A compensation category where all aspects of the claimant's daily life have been affected badly. PTSD will stop them from being able to work or functioning at pre-trauma levels.|
|Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)||Moderate||£7,680 to £21,730||A compensation category where the claimant has largely recovered well from the PTSD symptoms. Any that remain will not be grossly disabling.|
|Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)||Less Severe||Up to £7,680||A compensation category where an almost full recovery has been made (in around a year or two) and any longer term symptoms will be minor.|
|General Psychiatric Injury||Moderately Severe||£17,900 to £51,460||A compensation category where life, work and education have been affected as well as the claimant's relationships but there will be an optimistic prognosis. The amount of future vulnerability and how successful any treatment could be will also be considered.|
|General Psychiatric Injury||Moderate||£5,500 to £17,900||A compensation category where symptoms will be similar to those listed above but a significant amount of recovery will have happened and there will be a good prognosis.|
It’s important that the exact nature of your suffering is proven when trying to secure the correct amount of compensation. Therefore, as part of the claims process, your solicitor will arrange for a medical assessment to be carried out locally.
In your appointment, the medical specialist will assess the impact that the data breach has had on you and refer to any relevant medical records. They’ll then produce a report containing their findings and send it to your solicitor.
No Win No Fee Blackpool Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust Data Breach Claims
A perceived stumbling block for many people considering starting a claim is finding the funds to pay for the solicitor’s work. To alleviate that concern, and reduce some of your financial risk, our team of specialist solicitors will work on a No Win No Fee basis if your claim is accepted.
The first thing they’ll do is assess the claim to make sure there’s a reasonable chance of claiming successfully. Once they’re happy to continue, they’ll draft a Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA) for you to sign. The CFA is your contract which provides several benefits. As well as funding your case, the CFA means:
- You won’t pay any fees upfront.
- There will be no need to pay solicitor’s fees during the course of the claim.
- If the solicitor fails to win your case, you won’t have to pay any of their fees at all.
If your claim is won, then the solicitor will keep a small percentage of your compensation as a ‘success fee’ to cover their work. To be completely transparent, the solicitor will list the success fee (which is capped by law) in the CFA before you sign.
Finding A Data Breach Claim Expert
So, if you’re now thinking that you’d like to start a claim for a hospital data protection breach, how should you go about choosing a solicitor? Well, many people simply choose their local solicitor, but what if they don’t specialise in data breaches? Others simply read online reviews or ask friends for recommendations. A simple call to Legal Expert could save a lot of your time though.
Our team have been representing clients with different types of claims for decades. If you would like them to represent you, please read the following section to find out how to contact us. And you can check out our glowing reviews here!
Contact A Data Breach Claim Solicitor
To start your claim today, you can contact Legal Expert in the following ways:
- Call us free on 0800 073 8804 and let an advisor review your claim.
- Claim online and a representative will call you back at an agreed time.
- Make use of our live chat channel where an online advisor can provide free guidance.
- Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org to tell us what’s happened.
Extra Medical Claims Resources
This is the last part of our article on Blackpool NHS Trust data breach compensation claims. Therefore, we’ve listed some additional guides and resources that might prove useful:
Blackpool Medical Negligence Claims – Advice on finding a solicitor covering Blackpool to support medical negligence claims.
NHS Claims – Details on claiming against different areas of the NHS such as GP surgeries, opticians or pharmacists.
Blackpool Personal Injury Claims – Information on choosing a solicitor to help with claims for injuries sustained in Blackpool.
NHS Services In Blackpool – A list of services provided by the NHS trust.
CQC Inspection Report – The latest inspection report for Blackpool Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust by the Care Quality Commission.
Data Protection Guide – The latest advice on data protection from the ICO.
Guide by Hambridge
Edited by Billing