Wednesday 23 August 2017

€3m for man who sued hospital after he suffered brain damage aged 13

Emmanuel Popoola (22) leaving the Four Courts. Photo: Collins Courts
Emmanuel Popoola (22) leaving the Four Courts. Photo: Collins Courts

Tim Healy

A man who sued over his care in hospital at the age of 13 has settled his High Court action for €3m.

Emmanuel Popoola (22), of Woodbrook Hall, Castleknock, Dublin, has spastic quadriplegia, is in a wheelchair and cannot speak after suffering profound brain damage.

Through his father Olayide Popoola, Emmanuel sued the Children's University Hospital, Temple Street, Dublin, for alleged negligence in the assessment, diagnosis and treatment in 2008.

Approving the settlement, which includes his care in a HSE-funded institution for the rest of his life, Mr Justice Kevin Cross said the family's hopes for the boy, who at 13 years of age was doing well at school, must have been dashed by what happened.

It was claimed that on October 1, 2008, Emmanuel attended the hospital A&E suffering acute profuse diarrhoea, severe dehydration and hypovolemic shock.

It was claimed the hospital was negligent in allegedly administering excessive intravenous fluid, exposing him to a significant risk of fluid overload, and causing him to develop pulmonary oedema and cardiac arrest.

It was also claimed there was an alleged overloading of the boy with fluid which reportedly caused him to suffer fluid on the lungs and acute respiratory failure and cardiac arrest.

The hospital denied the claims and contended excessive fluids were not given and it was not necessary to ventilate. His counsel Denis McCullough said it was a complex case.

However, counsel said his side contended the outcome could have been different.

Experts were of the opinion that the cause of the boy's cardiac arrest was acute respiratory failure, secondary to pulmonary oedema that occurred in the context of alleged fluid overload.

This was disputed by the hospital.

Mr Justice Cross said he would approve the settlement on the basis the HSE will continue to fund Emmanuel's placement in the institution where he is currently cared for.

Irish Independent

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