Thursday 21 November 2019

Junior Cert boy gets €7m award for brain damage at birth

Kelly Campbell and Derek Nolan, parents of Dean Nolan Picture: Courtpix
Kelly Campbell and Derek Nolan, parents of Dean Nolan Picture: Courtpix

Tim Healy

A 15-year-old boy who suffered brain damage at birth has settled his High Court action for €7m.

Dean Nolan, who will be sitting his Junior Cert in June, had sued over the circumstances of his birth at the National Maternity Hospital (NMH) in Dublin.

Liability had been admitted in the case.

Dean, of Ardmore View, Gorey, Co Wexford, sued the NMH and the HSE through his mother, Kelly Campbell, over the circumstances of his birth on February 1, 2002.

It was claimed Ms Campbell was admitted to the NMH and was induced.

It was alleged that in the course of labour, cardiotocography readings revealed numerous and complex decelerations in the heart rate of the baby.

After five hours in the labour ward, oxytocin was commenced and later increased. Dean was delivered requiring resuscitation and later intubation and ventilation.

It was further claimed there was an alleged failure to treat Ms Campbell and her baby with all necessary skill, care, diligence and expertise. There was also an alleged failure to ensure the delivery of the baby in an expedient manner particularly in the light of the cardiotocography readings.

Christopher Meehan SC, for Dean, told the court that the case was unusual in that the boy does not have any physical deficits but had deficits of a neurocognitive nature.

Experts on both sides agreed the boy did not have cerebral palsy, he said.

Counsel said Dean's parents Derek Nolan and Kelly Campbell had made superhuman efforts in their care for their son.

The family since had two other children and Ms Campbell, who had been a supermarket assistant manager, had to give up her job to look after her son.

Counsel said Dean would need help for the rest of his life and it was clear the neurological deficit would affect his life.

Mr Justice Kevin Cross said while Dean did not have physical problems, the settlement would provide care for him for the rest of his life.

The judge wished Dean and his family well for the future.

Irish Independent

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