Overturning the usual limit that claims have to be brought within three years, a protocol agreed with the Royal Cornwall Hospitals NHS Trust (RCHT) means that women who were treated by Mr Jones anytime in the last 20 years can potentially bring a claim.

Mr Jones was suspended in May 2012 following an external review by the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (RCOG). Staff and patients at the hospital raised concerns about the frequency of complications following surgery he carried out.

Madeleine Pinschof, a clinical negligence specialist at Thompsons, said: “Hundreds of women may have been badly treated by Mr Jones over the years and this lifting of the time limit means women who might have been time barred can now come forward and seek justice.

“Our experience across the UK tells us that there are often far more women affected than at first thought in malpractice cases. Knowing where you stand legally can be an important part of the process of dealing with the past and we are here to listen to and support any women who are concerned about the treatment they received while under the care of Mr Jones.”