Judge Approves Compensation for Brain Damage due to a Mismanaged Birth

A judge at London´s High Court has approved a settlement of compensation for brain damage due to a mismanaged birth in favour of a woman in her thirties.

The woman – who cannot be named for legal reasons – was born with brain damage in the 1970s after her birth at the Southmead Hospital in Bristol was allegedly mismanaged. The woman has been looked after by her mother and sister since her birth; but, as her mother is now getting older, the decision was made to claim compensation for brain damage due to a mismanaged birth in order that the woman would be assured of professional care for the rest of her life.

The claim was unusual inasmuch as it had been made after so long a time. Initially, the Department of Health – against who the claim was made – contested its responsibility for the woman´s brain damage, but eventually agreed to a settlement package based on 50% liability without an actual admission of liability. The package consists of a £1.8 million lump sum in order that the family can buy a specially adapted home and annual tax-free, index-linked payments £120,000.

Approving the settlement of compensation for brain damage due to a mismanaged birth at London´s High Court, Mr Justice Foskett said the total value of the compensation package amounted to £3,345,000 due to the woman´s “greatly shortened” life expectancy. The judge commented that it was an “entirely sensible” package in the circumstances and paid tribute to the woman´s mother and sister for providing dedicated care for decades before taking legal action.

Also paying tribute to the “incredible care and devotion” provided by the woman´s mother and sister was William Wraight. Mr Wraight was in court representing the National Health Service said that Southmead Hospital “regrets the circumstances which gave rise to this claim”. Judge Foskett closed the hearing by saying the woman´s care was “very demanding, and has been over a number of years, none of which is her fault”.