Monday, June 28, 2010

€4.25m award over claim of birth negligence - no cesarean

This article appeared in The Irish Times last Wednesday [my bold]:

"A Severely disabled young man has secured €4.25 million in settlement of his High Court action over alleged negligence in the circumstances of his birth at a Cork hospital. The settlement is without admission of liability.

Dermot Moylan, Firville, Mallow, Co Cork, now aged 20, suffered severe mental and physical injuries as a result of his brain being deprived of oxygen shortly prior to his birth and will require lifelong care, it was claimed.

Through his mother Anna Moylan, Mr Moylan had sued the Southern Health Board; Erinville Hospital, Western Road, Cork, and two doctors – David Jenkins of Erinville Hospital and John McKiernan of the Cork Clinic, Western Road, Cork.

He claimed the defendants were negligent and breached their duty of care towards him during his birth at the hospital on the morning of August 7th 1989.

Mr Justice Iarfhlaith O’Neill said yesterday he was “more than happy” to approve the settlement offered.

In his claim, it was alleged the defendants failed to take measures including early delivery by Caesarean section which would have prevented him suffering injuries.

It was claimed that due to alleged negligence, a disruption to the child’s blood supply in the course of labour was not detected and, as a result, his brain was deprived of oxygen causing damage to his nervous system.

It was further claimed that despite the detection of an irregular heartbeat following his mother’s admission to the hospital, the defendants failed to take appropriate action.

The defendants had denied the claims.

Recommending acceptance of the settlement offer, Denis McCullough SC, for the plaintiff, said Ms Moylan was admitted to Erinville Hospital at about 3am on August 7th, 1989, and Dermot was born at approximately 7.17am.

As a result of a lack of oxygen to his brain, Dermot suffered brain damage and epilepsy, it was claimed. He has limited learning skills, mobility problems and attends a care centre five times a week, the court was told..."

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