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Compensation secured for York hospital spastic cerebral palsy case
Sophie* (four years old) was injured when delays during her birth reduced the supply of oxygen to her brain, causing a hypoxic ischaemic brain injury. This resulted in severe spastic cerebral palsy. Sophie needs assistance feeding and dressing herself and cannot weight bear, stand or crawl. She cannot wash herself and her speech is difficult to understand.
Spastic cerebral palsy is where a child loses the ability to relax their muscles, and the muscles becomes unyielding and tight (hypertonia). This results in a decreased range of movement and so may interfere with speaking, feeding, grasping and other movements that require coordination.
Our specialist cerebral palsy claim solicitors obtained an admission of liability from the NHS Trust. The valuing of the claim has been put back to 2014 however, because of Sophie’s age, substantial temporary short-term payments have been secured to cover her immediate needs.
The claim process
When our cerebral palsy claims team was first contacted in 2010, we began an investigation into Sophie’s delivery, what went wrong and how the hypoxic ischaemic brain injury that caused the spastic cerebral palsy could have been prevented. This involved looking at medical reports for Sophie and her mum and requesting reports from expert witnesses, such as a midwife and a neurologist.
In 2011, our cerebral palsy claim solicitors contacted the hospital, setting out what had happened to Sophie and how we believed hospital negligence had occurred. Our claim stated how the drug Syntocinon was not properly given to Sophie’s mum and how delays in responding to problems during the birth caused a hypoxic ischaemic brain injury, which could have been prevented by an earlier delivery.
Did the hospital admit fault?
The hospital admitted full claim liability for causing the hypoxic ischaemic brain injury that resulted in Sophie’s spastic cerebral palsy.
How was the case funded?
Legal aid was granted and there was no cost to Sophie or her family in making their cerebral palsy claim.
The future for Sophie
Sophie and her family are receiving temporary short-term payments whilst the valuing of the cerebral palsy claim compensation is put on hold until 2014. With claim compensation secured, Sophie will receive the care she needs both now and for the rest of her life.
*All names have been changed for client privacy.
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