Interim Cerebral Palsy Compensation Settlement Approved in High Court

An interim cerebral palsy compensation settlement for a ten-year-old Dublin boy who was tragically injured at his birth has been approved at the High Court.

Jamie Patterson was born at Dublin´s Coombe Hospital in November 2002 after his mother – Teresa Patterson from Drimnagh in Dublin – had been administered the drug Syntocinon to assist with her contractions.

Allegedly the hospital failed in its duty of care to monitor Teresa for foetal distress – an acknowledged side-effect of Syntocinon – and Jamie was born a spastic quadriplegic with cerebral palsy. Due to the hospital´s alleged negligence, Jamie is unable to talk and can only communicate with his mother through body language and facial expressions.

Teresa Patterson made a claim for cerebral palsy compensation against the Coombe Hospital on behalf of her son, alleging that the hospital´s mismanagement of Jamie´s birth was due to a failure to exercise a proper standard of care for Jamie and his mother.

The hospital denied the claims for compensation for cerebral palsy, but at the High Court in Dublin, Mr Justice Iarfhlaith O´Neill was told that an interim cerebral palsy compensation settlement of €1.58 million had been agreed by the Health Service Executive.

Mr Justice Iarfhlaith O´Neill heard that the settlement was made without admission of liability and was an interim payment until Jamie´s future needs were properly assessed. The judge said that in the circumstances it was an extremely prudent arrangement, and he approved the settlement before adjourning the case for two years to allow the assessment to be completed.