Friday 22 February 2019

Couple settles lawsuit over death of their baby at hospital for €150,000

Jane Farren and Feidhlimidh Wrafter leaving the court
Jane Farren and Feidhlimidh Wrafter leaving the court

Tim Healy

A COUPLE who sued for severe nervous shock over the death of their baby at birth in a maternity hospital have settled their High Court action for €150,000.

Solicitors Jane Farren and Feidhlimidh Wrafter of Spire View, Rathgar, Dublin, had sued consultant gynaecologist and obstetrician Professor Fergal Malone and the Rotunda Hospital as a result of the death of their daughter Molly on October 16, 2008.

The settlement was without admission of liability.

Speaking afterwards, the couple said there was never closure after the death of a child -- but they were satisfied the court proceedings were at an end.

Ms Farren, when pregnant with Molly, had attended Prof Malone on March 5, 2008, and continued to do so for the rest of the pregnancy.

The court heard that on October 15, 2008, Ms Farren was admitted to hospital with spontaneous rupture of membranes.

The labour-inducing drug Syntocinon was given to Ms Farren at 11pm and, at 3.44am, she was transferred to theatre for a trial of vacuum delivery.

Molly was delivered at 4.17am the following day by way of emergency caesarean section.

Attempts to resuscitate the baby continued for 24 minutes but to no avail.

The couple claimed there was an alleged failure to properly manage and monitor the labour, delivery and birth.

They also claimed an alleged failure to identify serious abnormalities in the foetal heart rate pattern in a sufficiently prompt and timely manner and to ensure earlier delivery.

It was further claimed after Molly's death there was an alleged failure to advise and fully inform the couple about all aspects of the labour and delivery and to properly advise them.

The couple claimed they were informed, or otherwise led to believe, Molly's death was unexplained and there was nothing which could or should have been done to prevent her death.

It was further claimed the couple believed their daughter had died due to some unknown event, or genetic or other problem, due to one or both of them, or to some pre-labour trauma.

Yesterday, Denis McCullough SC, for the couple, said the case had been settled without admission of liability and could be struck out.

He said the couple had since had two other children, Kristin and Isabelle.

Online Editors

Editor's Choice

Also in Irish News