Lawyers representing an eight-year-old girl who lives in constant pain, and has to be fed through a tube, due to admitted errors by hospital staff before her birth have succeeded in winning her a multi-million-pound compensation settlement from the NHS.
The girl was starved of oxygen during her mother’s traumatic labour and the NHS trust responsible for the hospital had admitted full liability for her injuries. The damage to her brain was so severe that she is unable to control her own body temperature and is thus at permanent risk of hypothermia.
Totally immobile, she has been dependent on tube feeding since she was 18 months old and her disabilities were described as ‘extreme’. She tends to scream inconsolably for hours on end at the top of her voice and the only way of quelling her painful muscle spasms is immersion in a hydrotherapy pool.
Following a High Court hearing, the trust was ordered to pay index-linked and tax-free annual sums to cover the girl’s future care needs, starting at £225,000 before rising to £290,000 when she is 18. She was also awarded £1.6 million to cover the cost of buying a suitable home in a London suburb and further sums to pay for adaptations to the property and installation of a hydrotherapy pool. Damages for her pain, suffering and loss of amenity were assessed at £295,000.