Benjamin, one of identical twins, was born prematurely at 25 weeks gestation. He currently lives in London with his family. At birth he suffered a low grade Intraventricular haemorrhage which is an unfortunate but common complication of prematurity. His IVH was treated successfully and Benjamin was developing normally, albeit with some hydrocephalus (a swelling of the ventricles caused by accumulation of cerebrospinal fluid). Benjamin’s paediatricians made several attempts to treat the hydrocephalus and ultimately inserted a mechanical shunt to drain fluid from his brain into his stomach.

Shortly after successful insertion of the shunt Benjamin became very unwell. He was admitted to the Children’s University Hospital, Temple Street where he was incorrectly diagnosed as suffering from gastroenteritis. Despite numerous requests from Benjamin’s medical team, the neurosurgical team in the hospital failed to tap Benjamin’s shunt to test his cerebrospinal fluid for signs of infection. In fact, Benjamin’s shunt was infected and caused meningitis which was allowed to progress for three days before the infection was diagnosed and the shunt removed. As a result of the three day negligent delay, Benjamin went on to suffer a pontine infarction (or stroke) and continues to suffer from severe cerebral palsy and global development delay.

Liability in the case was denied for three years and ultimately admitted the day before the case was due to commence in the High Court. After one day of hearing on the damages that should be awarded in the case the parties withdrew to engage in settlement discussions and ultimately it was agreed that the Defendants would pay for Benjamin’s care needs for the next three years as well as his accommodation, loss of earnings and general damages. This settlement will allow the family to acquire much-needed suitable accommodation in London and to put in place a full and comprehensive care package.

At the ruling of the settlement Counsel for the Defendant hospital offered Benjamin and his parents an apology for the deficiencies in care Benjamin received and the injuries he sustained. Mr Justice Cross congratulated Benjamin’s parents on their care of Benjamin to date and the terms of the settlement that had been negotiated by his legal team.

The case will return to court in three years for assessment of Benjamin’s future care needs for life.

If you have any further queries, please contact Michael Boylan, Partner and Head of Medical Negligence Group.

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18 April 2016

    Gillian and all at Augustus Cullen Law, A million thanks for a great job done. Justice for our son at last!!

    Catherine, Liam & William

    Dear Michael, A great result was achieved because of your efforts and we were truly blessed to have you on our side.

    Kathleen, Medical Negligence Client

    Dear Joice…you are and have been very professional, sympathetic and dignified in all of your dealings with us and I put that down to one simple fact. You listened.

    James, Medical Negligence Client

    Geraldine, Thank you most sincerely for all your hard work and commitment to these children.

    Freda McKittrick, Head of Barnardos Beacon Guardian Ad Litem service

    Neil is an absolute gentleman to deal with – kind, tactful and very efficient. We could not praise him highly enough. He brought us through a horrible time.

    Sean, Medical Negligence Client

    Many thanks again for a job well done. We really appreciate all your hard work and practical advice.

    Corporate client in a commercial litigation matter

    Dear Jamie, You and your team in ACL were so professional, diligent and prompt. I have recommended you and the firm, and will continue to do so

    Lorraine McCarthy

    Gus Cullen and the firm’s approach to addressing the key issues was professional, yet personal, efficient yet attentive.

    BB

    The process is a difficult one and when you deal with people who are so professional and yet genuine/real people, it makes it so much easier... so thanks a million.

    Julie

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