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€7m Birth Injury Compensation Settlement for Boy Due to Birth Injuries

A six-year-old boy who was taking a birth injury compensation action against the Health Service Executive (HSE) in relation to his birth at Mayo University Hospital has settled his High Court action for €7m.

The boy, who cannot be named order of the court, was awarded the settlement after mediation between the parties. Mr McCullough said medical experts for the boy claimed that strokes can be caused by hypoxia ischemia. However these claim were refuted by experts for the defendant. According to the legal representative for the boy, Denis McCullough SC, this is the first legal action of its type in Ireland where it was claimed that a baby suffered a neonatal stroke.

The boy had through his mother sued the HSE over the circumstances of his birth at the Castlebar hospital in 2013. She had attended the hospital and had a number of scans which showed seriously reduced amniotic fluid and a small foetus. it was alleged that a congenital abnormality was suspected, leading to an inappropriate plan to transfer the mother to Dublin.

However, the child was not suffering from a congenital abnormality and the foetal compromise should have been identified and a quick delivery carried out, it was alleged. Along with this it was  claimed an excessive amount of time was allowed to expire during attempts to secure a bed in Dublin for the mother and she was transferred to an ambulance but then taken back out as it was too late for such a transfer. A CTG trace to monitor the baby was begun and it is claimed it was grossly abnormal but was discontinued. A caesarean section was used to deliver the boy.

Following his birth, the boy underwent intensive resuscitation and he was later transferred to a Dublin hospital. The legal action said that there was an alleged failure to deliver the baby in a proper and timely and manner and an alleged failure to recognise the CTG abnormalities were causing damage to the baby or the situation required urgent intervention.

The HSE had, in order to refute this, argued that the boy suffered a stroke because of hypoxia ischemia – reduced brain oxygen caused by inadequate blood flow.

Mr Justice Kevin Cross, in approving the birth injury compensation settlement said: “We are incredibly proud of our boy. He is a happy child”.

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Boy (9) who Sustained Brain Injury as an Infant Award Record Medical Negligence Compensation of €32m

Benjamin Gillick, a nine year old boy who sustained life long brain damage due to a delayed diagnosis of infection following surgery by medical staff when he was only a small child just an infant, has had a €32 million medical negligence compensation award approved at the High Court.

The boy’s parents, Miriam and Andrew Gillick, urged with the judge not to approve the proposed award as they were of the opinion that is insufficient when it comes to dealing with his health for the remainder of his life. They said: “It leaves us with a shortfall that will be imposed on ourselves or our children, or possibly our grandchildren.”

Presiding Judge Justice Kevin Cross told those present that a small percentage of the compensation, under €500,000, was being awarded due to the tragic injuries inflicted on Benjamin. Most of the remainder of the compensation awarded is being made s due to the cost of Benjamin’s complex treatment, educational and housing needs for the rest of his life.

The family previously live at Knockmaroon Hill, Chapelizod, Dublin but are now living in London.  As party of the legal action Benjamin alleged the hospital was negligent about the investigation, diagnosis, management treatment and care of the shunt infection which he attended with on April 9th, 2011.Judge Cross, in giving his approval for a final settlement offer of €25m, stated: “When the headlines come to be written it should be noted that no one is getting a bonanza”.

Andrew Gillick, the boy’s father, told the Judge that he is worried with regard to the money being insufficient when compared to rates of return on investment in England, where the family have moved to. He went on to say that there has recently been a similar case decided in the UK where the compensation award was approximately €45m due to the costs of carers, therapies, aids and appliances, transport and education. He (Andrew) cried as he spoke of of his son’s “gruelling regime”daily that includes therapy for hours each day and that the need for two carers. Their figures for their son’s needs were not inflated he added.

Benjamin and his identical twin brother weres born prematurely. At 11 months old Benjamin had to undergo a clinical procedure at Temple Street Children’s Hospital to drain fluid from his brain. At the time a shunt was placed to address this issues. However, the boy was later brought back to the hospital as he was puking and feeling quite sick.

The High Court was informed that a shunt infection is a common complication of the process and the cause of the negligence was that for up to three days this possibility was not investigated. The court was also informed that Benjamin suffers with cerebral palsy, is quadriplegic, and cannot communicate verbally like other children of the same age.


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€1.26m Medical Negligence Compensation for Man who Contracted Hepatitis C from Contaminated Blood Transfusion

It was ruled in High Court today that a man, who is suffering from advanced liver disease, is to get compensation of more than €1.26 million as a result of contracting Hepatitis C from a contaminated blood transfusion administered to him when he was a young child boy.

When he was 20-years-old the man was given a provisional compensation award of €647,000 from the Hepatitis C and HIV Compensation Tribunal.  He appealed to the High Court in relation to  an additional compensation award of €200,000 made in 2018. He is now over 40-years old and is married with children.

Mr Justice Bernard Barton , in a judgment released this week, more than trebled the €200,000 award to a sum of €620,642 while also increasing the tribunal’s general compensation award of €150,000 to €220,000. This was in relation to the consequences of decompensated cirrhosis of the liver – advanced liver disease – caused by the Hepatitis C virus.

The man claimed  the award failed to properly take into account the devastating consequences de-compensated cirrhosis has had, and will go on having, on every aspect of his life, including shortening it and the likelihood he will develop liver cancer at some point in the future. Along with this he was seeking compensation in relation to some childcare costs arising from his inability to assist with childcare.

His spouse is in full time employment in a senior position, is not due to retire for many years, so they have had to hire a permanent childminder.

In his judgment, the judge remarked that the man contracted Hepatitis C due to a contaminated blood transfusion given to him as a toddler when he was taken to hospital in the 1980s in relation to a different medical condition which was successfully treated.

However, during his adolescence, the Hepatitis C illness began to affect impact on his bodily functions, he had to decline a promotion to an important position and had to retire from work when he was just 20 years old.


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