€70k hike in hep C award
The High Court has increased by €70,000 a compensation award made to a woman who was infected with hepatitis C through the blood product anti-D.
Mr Justice Bernard Barton increased an award made by the Hepatitis C Compensation Tribunal from €180,000 to €250,000 after the woman had developed "life-destroying" side-effects, including cirrhosis of her liver and a brain injury, after undergoing treatment two years ago.
The woman, who cannot be identified by order of the court, was given an anti-D injection in 1977 which came from a batch infected with hepatitis C. She had previously been given an interim award of £283,000 in 1998 by the Tribunal.
She returned to the Tribunal arising out of complications and earlier this year was awarded an additional €180,000.
The woman was dissatisfied with the award made to her by the Tribunal, which she appealed to the High Court, claiming it was insufficient and inadequate.
The Minister for Health opposed her appeal.
The court heard that a side-effect of the woman's treatment resulted in psychological and physical effects, including slurred speech, and forgetfulness. The condition is irreversible and requires on-going medical treatment.