Case Studies: Healthcare

£150,000 for failure to treat Spinal Cord Compression

O’Reilly Stewart Solicitors recovered £150,000 damages for a patient mistreated by the Belfast Health and Social Care Trust.

The Plaintiff became unwell in and around 2012.  She was subsequently diagnosed as suffering from an infectious spondylodiscitis in her thoracic spine.  Treatment commenced in relation to that condition.  Later she attended a Review Clinic, in October 2012, when she reported difficulty sitting straight, and reported significant difficulties in walking.  She attended the appointment in a wheelchair, and she complained of shock-like pain from her hips down her legs.  She was advised to continue her current medication, and approximately 4 days later she collapsed having suffered a spinal cord compression.  She underwent posterior stabilisation and decompression.

The Plaintiff initially approached Solicitors for the purposes of pursuing a case.  Patrick Mullarkey of O’Reilly Stewart was appointed in January 2018.  Proceedings were issued on her behalf and progressed to settlement in 2022.  In the course of the said proceedings, the Trust admitted the breach of duty alleged on the part of the Trust by the injured patient. The Trust accepted that the Plaintiff ought to have been diagnosed with new onset neurological symptoms at the time of the review in October 2012 and that it was a failure not to do so. Reports were obtained on behalf of the Plaintiff in respect of her medical condition and in relation to her impairment in her day to day activities.  After discussion between the parties’ respective legal representatives, the case was settled for payment of damages in the sum of £150,000 and full costs.

The Plaintiff has commented “…I approached…to file a negligence case, fortunately she transferred my case to your firm.  We appreciate and are thankful for all of your services and quick communication. …Your services are star ranking.  I never had any problem with you”. SB and JR

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