An injury with an generator

A 24 Year Old Apprentice Service Engineer was carrying out a repair to a generator during which he was hit by a steel component partially severing his left non-dominant hand.

He was immediately taken to theatre for emergency surgery.

The hand was amputated at the wrist with a clean cut on the lateral side. There were no other injuries and specifically no fractures. Psychologically he was showing early signs of severe anxiety and significant emotional distress. All of his immediate treatment needs were met via the NHS, where he remained for 3 weeks and underwent further surgery.

The case was referred to Zurich within 4 days of the accident and although he was still an inpatient, Zurich’s Medical Management Team was able to make initial enquiries with his employer, his mother and panel solicitors.

A skin graft was taken from his thigh and grafted to his stomach. An anastomosis was then created so to encourage good blood supply to the amputated hand in an attempt to save the hand. Three weeks after his admission he was discharged from hospital and Zurich’s Medical Management team organised a psychological assessment at home within 2 days of his discharge.

A diagnosis of psychological damage was confirmed and a course of treatment approved. The claimant showed great resolve to get back to work, Zurich’s Medical Management Team worked closely with all parties and in particular the psychologist to organise supported workplace exposure. Within 3 months of the accident he was able to resume his duties.

Physiotherapy was provided via the NHS to improve the function of the hand once it had been reattached at the wrist and the outcome was very good with only minimal neurological deficit in his middle finger.

Without the early psychological intervention and the co-ordinated approach taken by Zurich  the claimant would not have been able to return to work within 18 months of the index accident.

The initial reserve of the case was £1.2 million but was finally settled at half this amount of which treatment costs were £2484.