Thursday 8 December 2016

'Maybe if we’d gone somewhere else it wouldn’t have happened our little girl' - Father of girl (3) awarded €1.9m dismisses hospital apology

David Kearns

Published 22/07/2015 | 14:01

Miagros Martin, with her parents Ruary and Nanci, and her brother Photo: Aidan Oliver
Miagros Martin, with her parents Ruary and Nanci, and her brother Photo: Aidan Oliver

THE father of a little girl awarded a €1.9 million interim payment because she suffered cerebral palsy at birth believes Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital Drogheda would “act no differently today than three years ago”.

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Ruary Martin dismissed an apology read out on behalf of staff at the Louth hospital in the High Court today following its decision to approve a €1.9 million interim settlement payment to his three-year-daughter Milagros.

Speaking to Newstalk Radio, he said the apology “meant very little” to his family because “it reads ‘all staff regret the outcome…’, well we’ve heard nothing from any individual staff on their failings that day. Nothing at all.”

“Our daughter was born in 2011… three and half years have passed and the failings they’re apologising for now were very obvious immediately after birth.”

Read More: Little girl born with cerebral palsy awarded €1.9m for 'deficits in care'

Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital, Drogheda has apologised in court for what it described as "deficits in care" in relation to the birth of Milagros Martin.

The three-year-old, who is currently receiving treatment in the US, sued the HSE through her father as a result of the circumstances of her birth at the hospital in December 2011.

The apology was read out as part of the settlement of Milagros Martin's case against the HSE with an interim settlement pay out of €1.9m for her care for the next three years.

The hospital said it apologised "sincerely and unambigiously" to the Martin family and said "all staff regret the outcome of this tragic case".

“The HSE admitted three breaches of duty… and, to be blunt, I would have very little faith even now in Our Lady of Lourdes.

“The hospital has written to us about its New Open Disclosure policy but we see no evidence of it, absolutely none.

“If the same thing happened tomorrow, we don’t believe [the] hospital would act any differently.”

Read More: Baby death probes now nationwide

Mr Martin told Newstalk Lunchtime that the his partner and himself had “naively” believed that all the high profile incidents at Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital, Drogheda, would have “meant it would be safe”.

“It’s something we have thought over all this time… that maybe if we’d gone somewhere else it wouldn’t have happened, and our little girl might be running around playing.

“I mean part of the reason why we’re here talking to the media is a sense of duty to the other families that have gone through this and unfortunately we wouldn’t be the last.”

A spokesman for Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital Drogheda said it apologised  sincerely and unambiguously to the Martin Family for the deficits in care in relation to the birth of Milagros.

He said: ”All staff regret the outcome of this tragic case.  Learnings from it have been adopted by the Hospital and the RCSI Group of Hospitals of which OLOLH Drogheda is a part.  Ongoing audit of the learnings continues at the Hospital and in the Group.”

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