Monday 24 July 2017

Patient says back surgery was undone by slip and fall in hospital

Mater Private Hospital. Picture: Google Maps
Mater Private Hospital. Picture: Google Maps

Tim Healy

A patient's back surgery was undone when she slipped on the wet floor of a hospital bathroom the day after she underwent the surgery, it has been claimed in the High Court.

Edel Byrne (29), Cedar Park, Ridgewood, Swords, Dublin, is suing the Mater Private Hospital in Dublin and cleaning contractors, Noonan Topco Ltd, Ardee Road, Rathmines, Dublin.

She claims negligence over the condition of the floor in the ensuite bathroom which she was using the day after her surgery on February 21, 2012.

Both defendants deny liability.

It is alleged Ms Byrne, who is a nurse, slipped and hit her head against a washbasin and her back against the toilet bowl.

Her counsel said the fall effectively undid the surgery she had undergone.

Her lawyers applied to the court for an order requiring Noonan Topco to provide further and better particulars of its defence to the claim.  

They said the replies given so far were far too general and they were "left guessing" about what the defence was.

Mr Justice Seamus Noonan rejected the application saying the replies given by Noonan Topco were effectively the "bog standard" type in slip and fall cases. 

What Ms Byrne's side was seeking was for the defendant to say how the accident happened and that could not be done unless it had someone in the bathroom who had witnessed the accident.

He was perfectly satisfied Noonan Topco had supplied sufficient particulars.

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