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Monday 22 September 2014

Missed fracture wrecked Olympic dream

Tim Healy

Published 01/05/2014 | 02:30

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Amy Rose McGowan, with her parents Colette and Kieran.

A YOUNG woman's hopes of competing as a runner in the Special Olympics were dashed when a fracture to her knee was missed by a hospital, the High Court heard.

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Yesterday, Amy Rose McGowan settled her action against the HSE for alleged negligence for €142,000.

Mr Justice Michael Peart said it was a tragedy that Ms McGowan did not get to the Special Olympics, and a pity her running career had been cut short.

Ms McGowan, the court heard, had been training and hoping to compete in the next Special Olympics in Athens when she fell and hurt her knee during a 50-metre sprint race in May 2009.

Her counsel Dr John O'Mahony said she had won 34 medals and 10 trophies in the area of athletics and swimming before the accident.

Ms McGowan (31), of Manorlands, Trim, Co Meath, through her mother Colette McGowan, sued the HSE as a result of her care, diagnosis and treatment in the emergency department of Our Lady's Hospital, Navan, Co Meath, on May 8, 2009.

It was claimed there was a failure to interpret the X-rays of her knee, which demonstrated a depressed fracture, or to diagnose she had suffered such a fracture. It was further claimed the hospital interpreted and reported the X-rays as not revealing any abnormality.

The case had been before the court for assessment of damages only, as liability was conceded.

Approving the settlement, Mr Justice Peart invited Ms McGowan to show her medals to the court and said he was "very impressed and full of admiration" for her.

Irish Independent

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