Alan Thawley, whose wife Malak passed away during surgery for an ectopic pregnancy at the National Maternity Hospital (NMH) in 2016 has settled his High Court action for medical negligence compensation.
Mrs Thawley, aged 34 at the time of her death was expecting her first when she died at the Holles Street hospital on May 8, 2016.
In the initial hearing legal representatives for Mr Thawley advised the court last week that his wife’s death was a result of a “cascade of negligence”. Liam Reidy SC, representing Mr Thawley argued that the doctor who carried out the surgery on Malak, a teacher and a US citizen, was an inexperienced junior surgeon and was not adequately supervised.
He added that the ineptitude of the physicians could be highlighted particularly when a decision was taken to cool Mrs Thawley’s brain with ice. Upon discovery that there was no ice in the hospital two doctors were sent across the road to a pub to get ice as there was none in the hospital.
Mr Justice Anthony Barr was told, when the case came back before the court on Tuesday, that it was settled for compensatory damages only and aggravated or exemplary damages were not involved. No other specific details of the medical negligence settlement were provided to the court.
Commenting outside the court Alan Thawley said that he was happy to have come to a settlement after a long and harrowing process. He said: “There is no compensation that could replace the profound loss of my wife’s untimely and needless death”.
Mr Thawley went on to say: “The proceedings were brought forth to expose the cascade of negligence demonstrated by the hospital”.
He also committed to working with the Department of Health’s Ministerial Inquiry in a bid to prevent other people suffering, as he has, in the future.