Belfast Telegraph

Tuesday 22 July 2014

Five-year-old brain damaged Co Down boy to receive '£4 million in damages' in medical negligence case

The Ulster Hospital
Ulster Hospital - dundonald

A five-year-old north Down boy left severely brain damaged at birth is to receive an estimated £4 million in damages.

In one of the biggest medical negligence cases of its kind, the payout is being made to settle a lawsuit brought by the child's family.

They sued the South Eastern Health and Social Care Trust after he was starved of oxygen while being born at the Ulster Hospital in 2007.

The boy, who cannot be named, suffered hypoxia and has been left with severe cerebral palsy.

It was accepted that his delivery should have taken place sooner than it did.

Although the Trust admitted liability in September last year, issues about the cost of care and the extent of the injury remained unresolved.

The case was listed for a week-long hearing at the High Court in Belfast to decide the level of damages.

But a compensation package which ensures that all necessary care, aid and equipment required for the child's future needs has now been agreed between the parties.

The exact details, which were approved by Mr Justice Gillen today, remain undisclosed.

However, lawyers involved in the case confirmed that the settlement was in the region of £4 million.

It includes a lump sum and yearly payments for the cost of providing future care.

The family's solicitor Ernie Telford, senior partner with McCartan Turkington Breen, said they were relieved the court proceedings have now concluded.

Mr Telford added: "For the boy's family this has been an emotional journey in which their lives have been turned upside down but that hopefully, with the outcome approved by the court, they can move forward and focus solely on providing their child with the best possible care."

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