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Compensation for Shigella Dysentery on Holiday

Public Health England advises that Shigella is a form of dysentery caused by the consumption of water or food that has been contaminated by human faeces.

For many of the clients that we help who have been confirmed as suffering from Shigella, the cause of their infection has been linked to unhygienic practices adopted by hotel staff, these include:

  1. Consumption of salads and fruit that has been washed in contaminated water
  2. Swimming pools that have not been cleaned following episodes of diarrhoea while still in the pool
  3. Service of ice in drinks made from untreated water
  4. Contamination of the hotel water supply by use of sewage to irrigate hotel gardens

A tour operator will be expected to ensure that a safe system is in place for ensuring water is suitable for human consumption. Therefore it is likely you will have good grounds for claiming compensation if you do contract Shigella whilst on a package holiday.

The symptoms of Shigella include diarrhoea, abdominal cramps, fever, and vomiting.

Holiday Hotel Watch

How can you Claim Compensation for Shigella from your Tour Operator?

In order to claim against your tour operator for the pain and suffering associated with a Shigella infection, you will need to know that you contracted Shigella in the first place.

You can establish whether you contracted Shigella by consulting your doctor when you return to the UK and making sure he requests a stool sample to be sent to a lab for testing.

Once the sample has been submitted, it will take a week or so before you have the results back.

If the results are positive, you will need to show that you picked up the illness at your hotel, which formed part of a package holiday. Below are some “tell-tale” signs that may indicate that the hotel is responsible for Shigella:

  • You spent most of the time at your hotel
  • Your swimming pool was unclean and there was no sensation of chlorine when swimming
  • The hotel public toilets were dirty and overflowing
  • The hotel kitchen appeared to be unclean
  • The restaurant was not kept clean
  • You did not eat, drink or swim outside of the hotel
  • There was an abundance of flies around the hotel

It is also possible that you can claim compensation for Shigella if someone in your party suffered from Shigella and you share similar symptoms.

Common holiday destinations for those returning to the UK with Shigella include Egypt, Turkey, the Dominican Republic and Tunisia.

How can Simpson Millar LLP Help You Claim Compensation for Shigella?

Simpson Millar LLP has a dedicated team of travel lawyers that specialise in helping people make compensation claims for illness suffered on holiday.

We offer full representation to all our clients and will advance the legal arguments on your behalf in order to speed up your claim.

Where necessary, we will appoint a doctor who is able to pinpoint the mostly likely source of the infection, as well as advise about the likely duration of your symptoms if you have continuing problems.

We will do all the negotiating on your behalf and advise you about whether you should accept compensation for the illness you suffered from.

Holiday complaints and compensation for unhygienic practices

How much Compensation can I Claim?

The amount of compensation you receive for Shigella will depend on the extent of your dysentery. Most of our clients suffer for 10 days or so which is consistent with the duration advised by NHS Choices, although some of our clients have gone on to suffer from symptoms such as Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS).

It's hard to put an exact figure on how much compensation you will receive because there are often many factors to consider. These may include the cost of the holiday and whether you also have other “out of pocket” expenses, such as loss of earnings.

We can give you a rough guide for the value of your claim, should you wish to take advantage of our free telephone consultation service.

Get in touch for a chat about how we can help you by filling in our quick, no obligation enquiry form and we will call you back or you can call us directly on 0808 145 1353.

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Author: © 2014

Dated: 12/03/2014

Holiday Claims Litigation Manager Paul Stevens