Sunday 10 December 2017

€2.5m for cancer man who claims diagnosis made late

Tim Healy

A YOUNG man will get a €2.5m payout after he was left severely disabled because of an alleged delay in diagnosing a brain tumour.

However, future payouts to fund the care of Seamus Walshe Jnr (27) depend on new legislation being introduced.

Mr Walshe Jnr claims there was an alleged failure by University Hospital Galway to diagnose his brain tumour at the earliest opportunity.

The former construction studies student later underwent surgery at Beaumont Hospital in Dublin, but complications there meant he was in intensive care for nine weeks.

Mr Walshe Jnr, of Devon Gardens, Taylor's Hill, Galway, sued for damages through his father Seamus Walshe Snr, taking the case against the HSE and Beaumont Hospital.

The case was settled at the High Court without admission of liability.

The settlement provides for payout care for the next three years and periodic payments afterwards -- if the appropriate legislation is introduced.

But Ms Justice Mary Irvine said there was no guarantee that periodic payments legislation will be introduced and there has been a "deathly silence" from the Government on the matter.

Mr Walshe Snr said that their "entire life has been turned upside down".

He said the settlement won't undo the damage done, but his son will be able to get rehabilitation treatment overseas.

Mr Walshe was a third-level student when he first complained of problems with his eyes including his upward gaze, along with nausea and vomiting six years ago.

It was claimed that as a result of the initial delay in diagnosis in Galway, Mr Walshe's tumour grew and spread into surrounding tissue and he continued to suffer pain and discomfort.

If scans has been done, it was claimed, he would have been referred to Beaumont sooner.

It was also claimed that surgery was performed with a failure to regard that the type of tumour was one which responds well to radiotherapy and chemotherapy, even when it has spread, with long-term survival rates of up to 90pc.

Problem

After initial neurological examination he was told he had no problem and it is claimed he was told he should "get used" to his eye movement problem.

He eventually underwent surgery on May 22, 2007, but suffered haemorrhaging and initially did not wake up.

He was later transferred back to Galway in November 2007 and to the National Rehabilitation Centre in September 2008.

On admission, he was in a wheelchair, had severe spasticity of the limbs and severe disorder of eye movements.

Irish Independent

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