03 October 2012
Boy awarded £1 million compensation after misdiagnosis
Clinical negligence compensation of more than £1 million has been awarded after doctors failed to diagnose a boy with meningitis.
The unnamed child - who is now 17-years-old - was taken by his parents to the accident and emergency department of the Princess Alexandra Hospital in Harlow, Essex, in July 2002 because he was feeling ill and suffered with backache.
However, despite the fact the child was unwell for almost a week, professionals at the medical institution failed to spot the fact he had meningitis quickly enough and he was subsequently left with brain damage.
His parents therefore took legal action against the Princess Alexandra Hospital NHS Trust and the writ issued to the High Court in London indicated that their son was not admitted to the hospital until it was too late.
The body admitted liability for the boy's health problems three years ago on the grounds of breach of duty and, earlier this week, agreed to grant the patient a seven-figure sum of damages.
According to the writ served on the child's behalf, the fact he had suffered a loss of power in his left leg and arm should have made it clear to doctors that he was displaying the signs of this serious illness, but their delay in administering the correct treatment turned out to be catastrophic.
Indeed, barrister Elizabeth Ann Gumbel QC stated that had the boy been diagnosed and treated just 24 hours earlier, he would not have sustained life-changing brain injuries.
Consequently, the boy has been granted a lump sum settlement of just over £1 million followed by annual, index-linked payments to pay the costs of his care for the remainder of his life.
Approving this ruling, Mr Justice Eady said the boy's mother and father had "cared for him with great devotion since the devastating events ten years ago".
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Posted by Chris Stevenson