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Injury settlement

A physiotherapist who injured her back during a hoist manoeuvre has been awarded £107,000 in compensation.

Victoria Cameron was working at Addenbrookes hospital, Cambridge,  in 2002 when a patient’s legs gave way while using a new standing hoist. Ms Cameron twisted her back as she tried to prevent the 117kg patient’s feet from being crushed. She developed debilitating back pain and her job had to be modified. 

Her case was complicated when medical investigations revealed that she had pre-existing abnormalities of her spine, for which she later had surgery. However, the hospital accepted liability after doctors agreed that the effects of the abnormalities had been speeded up by her injury.

Ms Cameron, who was medically retired in 2006, said she had been very reluctant to sue the hospital and had waited a year before taking any action. But her CSP steward had persuaded her to seek advice from the CSP members’ solicitor service Thompsons when her condition did not improve.

‘I would never have taken action if I hadn’t been encouraged by the steward. I felt embarrassed and guilty about suing the hospital,’ she admitted, and said that her former employer responded fairly and generously. Ms Cameron praised the CSP legal service and said ‘you don’t appreciate your member fees until something like this happens’.

Terry Brandon, CSP national officer for employment relations and union services, said some members feared taking action but assured they would be supported by ERUS.

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