Robert Bolt joined our Medical Negligence team in 2020. Based in our Cardiff office, Robert works with clients who have unfortunately suffered physically or mentally as a consequence of negligent care provided by a healthcare professional or organisation.
When these mistakes do happen, Robert will seek financial compensation on behalf of the client for additional medical treatment, costs of care already incurred, potential loss of earning and any adaptions required for the client to adapt their home.
We met with Rob to find out more him and have shared the conversation below:
Where Were You Born and When Did You Qualify?
I was born in Cardiff and grew up in the Trowbridge and Llanrumney areas of the city. I studied law at Cardiff University and then spent a year at the University of Law in Bristol. After I had finished my education, I started working at a national firm dealing with personal injury claims. I worked there for eight years and qualified in 2018.
Why Did You Choose a Legal Career, and Why Did You Choose to Specialise in Medical Negligence?
I had a slightly different introduction to the legal industry. When I was a younger, a lady I practiced Taekwondo with was a partner in a law firm and I became interested in law after finding out more about what she did. I was fortunate to secure some work experience at the law firm she worked for and thoroughly enjoyed the whole experience including meeting barristers. Once I started studying, I knew that law was the career for me.
I’ve dealt with a variety of claims in my career to include road traffic accidents and public liability claims. I decided to specialise in medical negligence cases after seeing the impact on patients and their relatives lives when things go wrong. The claims are often complex and, unfortunately, some GP’s, hospitals and dentists do take advantage of patients when they raise concerns about their treatment directly with them.
They have a duty of candour to raise their hands when things go wrong. In my experience, they often respond to say nothing has gone wrong with treatment, but when I have investigated a claim, failures are identified which has caused avoidable harm to the patient.
Client’s whose medical treatment has gone wrong are often quite vulnerable and I feel it is important that they have someone who is able to understand the medical and legal issues involved, explain it to them clearly and achieve the best outcome for them.
What Are Your Favourite Aspects of Medical Negligence?
I really enjoy learning about different medical issues. Medicine is similar to law in that it never stays stagnant so what may be best practice and treatment may not be the case in the next five years.
Medical negligence cases can be very difficult claims and it is satisfying when you are able to conclude a case and ensure that a client has the necessary care and treatment that they may require in the future because of what has gone wrong.
Can You Provide a Few Examples of the Variety of Cases You Have Worked On?
Some examples of cases I have worked on include:
· Delays in diagnosis of different types of cancer including bowel, prostate, melanoma’s, lung cancer and brain tumours.
· Ophthalmology cases including cataract surgery and failures to arrange follow up appointments resulting in vision loss.
· Dental claims involving teeth extraction and poorly completed cosmetic treatment.
· Orthopaedic claims including delays in diagnosing tendon injuries, missed and incorrectly treated wrist fractures, incorrectly performed hip replacements, delays in treating spinal injuries, delays in diagnosing and treating rotator cuff tears and shoulder dislocations.
· Pressure sore claims
· Falls in hospital resulting in fractures.
· Urology claims involving testicular torsion and incorrectly performed circumcisions.
· Claims against GP’s.
· Surgery and Gastroenterology claims including gastric sleeve surgery, hernia repairs, unnecessary damage to internal organs during surgery and nerve injuries caused by the incorrect positioning of patients on the operating table.
· Accident and Emergency negligence to include treatment which has caused avoidable brain injuries.
· Consent cases where medical professionals have not obtained the appropriate consent for treatment.
What Are Your Career Ambitions?
I am excited to have joined Howells and to be part the Personal Injury and Medical Negligence department. Having worked in a national firm, it’s refreshing to be part of a smaller team. The main difference I have noticed is that we are able to provide the quality and knowledge of a national firm but with a more personal touch.
I am looking forward to continuing to use my knowledge to help clients who have experienced substandard care in getting the answers they need about their treatment and any support they need to help rectify the position they have found themselves in.
When You Aren’t In Work, What Do You Enjoy Doing?
Outside of work, I am kept very busy as the chief instructor of a Taekwondo club which is based in the Cardiff and Caerphilly areas. I’m currently a 5th degree black belt and have been involved in martial arts for over 25 years. I’m often doing other keep fit activities in order to maintain my fitness so that I can continue to compete in national and international competitions.
Have You Been Subjected to Medical Negligence?
If you haven't been treated with the due care and attention you're entitled to, talk to us about how our extensive medical negligence advice and support can help you.