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Judge Approves Settlement of Cerebral Palsy Claim for Compensation

A judge at the High Court has approved the settlement of a cerebral palsy claim for compensation that took eight years to resolve.

The cerebral palsy claim for compensation was made on behalf of a boy born at Cork University Hospital on August 11th 2008. Due to a multiple failures on the day of his delivery – and an avoidable delay in acting on a telling CTG trace – the boy suffered unrecognised foetal distress and was starved on oxygen in his mother´s womb.

As a result of hospital negligence, the boy was born with cerebral palsy. Now almost nine years of age, he suffers daily seizures due to his epilepsy, is confined to a wheelchair and has cognitive impairments that will prevent him from ever leading an independent life. He requires around-the-clock care which, until recently, was provided for him by his parents.

On their son´s behalf, his parents made a cerebral palsy claim for compensation against Cork University Hospital and the HSE. The HSE denied liability for the boy´s birth injuries until February, at which point legal representatives from both parties agreed a €15 million settlement of boy´s claim that will ensure his financial future and provide him with the care he needs for the rest of his expected life.

The details of the settlement were related to Mr Justice Kevin Cross at the High Court, who – after hearing an impact statement read to the court by the boy´s mother – ordered that $720,000 of the settlement be paid to the boy´s parents in special damages. The remainder will be paid into court to be managed on the boy´s behalf. The boy will also become a ward of court.

An apology from the Cork University Hospital was also read to the court before the judge formally approved the settlement of the cerebral palsy claim for compensation. The judge closed the approval hearing by saying that the settlement was a good one and by wishing the boy and his family well for the future.

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