When Doctors Get It Wrong – The Patient’s Guide to Dealing with Medical Errors Dr Nicholas Rae

By October 3, 2019Books, Public

This is not a book for the faint hearted. As a guide for patients proposing to take on the medical establishment that is just as it should be. It is based on a manual prepared by the author when the PPI scandal was in full swing. Unqualified insurance claims handlers needed to know enough medicine to challenge medics who were supporting their patients – potential insurance claimants.

As such, it gives detailed guidance on how to read medical notes, with their jargon and abbreviations. It is almost a small medical textbook, but cuts through the technicalities to help patients understand what may have gone wrong with their treatment. The book goes on to give the background to illness (pathology) and then has separate chapters on the different areas of medicine which, in the author’s wide experience, have given rise to claims against doctors. Medical errors are profusely illustrated by real case histories.

In addition to telling the patient what they should expect of their doctor, the author has also included an account of management, since this is often at the heart of medical accidents. This provides a scathing indictment of the NHS hierarchy and political interference, with detailed accounts of the Mid Staffordshire scandal and inside knowledge of the Bristol heart surgery whistleblower, Dr Stephen Bolsin. The book concludes with chapters on how to bring a doctor to book, and what the aggrieved patient can expect if they decide to pursue a claim or complaint. 

The author, Dr Nicholas Rae McCarthy, writes as Dr Nicholas Rae.  He is a registered doctor with extensive hospital practice and 25 years in general practice. He is a former chief medical officer for Aviva Insurance and a founder member of the Expert Witness Institute.  MJA members in a position to review the book are cordially invited to contact <>

 RELEASE DATE: 28th November 2019

£ 11.99

ISBN: 9781838591618






Nicholas Rae McCarthy

Author Nicholas Rae McCarthy

Former dentist and medical practitioner, now retired to pursue a writing career. Having come into the medical profession as an older entrant, I was invited to provide advice on doctors who were being investigated by the NHS. This progressed to report writing for medical litigation, and an appointment as assistant editor of the Medico-Legal Journal. While pursuing a career in general practice I also held the post as chief medical officer for Norwich Union Insurance and wrote of their in-house publication "Medicine for Disability Insurers," I then formed a company, Medical Evidence Ltd. I no longer provide expert litigation evidence, but because of the growing number of complaints from dissatisfied patients I have recently self- published a book specifically aimed at educating patients – "When Doctors Get It Wrong". This is under my given names as "Dr Nicholas Rae". I hope to continue writing on medical topics well into my retirement and am delighted to be an associate member of the MJA

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