Our Case of the Week comes from Exeter County Court where we represented a staff nurse who suffered an injury while trying to enter the room of a patient with mental health problems, who had blocked his door.

The hospital defended the claim all the way to trial, saying that our client should have been aware that the patient had for a number of days been repeatedly blocking his doorway, and so it should have been no surprise to our client.

The reality of the situation was that our client, like many if not all employed by the NHS, was working in a very busy environment and was not fully updated on the latest details of the patient’s current behaviour pattern.

"The injury caused to our client could have so easily been avoided had the hospital taken a sheet of paper, written a note on it and pinned it to the patient’s door. It would not have been onerous or costly."

Stefanie Button, Litigation Executive, Thompsons Solicitors

At trial, the Judge recognised this and accepted the simple point that the accident could have been avoided by simply having a sign on the patient’s door to warn staff. The Judge therefore found in our client’s favour.

Representing our client was Stefanie Button from Thompsons’ National Litigation Unit. She said: “The injury caused to our client could have so easily been avoided had the hospital taken a sheet of paper, written a note on it and pinned it to the patient’s door. It would not have been onerous or costly.”