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Let Ruth's legacy have real meaning

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Ruth Morrissey. Photo: Collins Courts

Ruth Morrissey. Photo: Collins Courts

Ruth Morrissey. Photo: Collins Courts

You would think being told you had just two years to live was bad enough. But when Ruth Morrissey got this diagnosis in 2018, it was compounded by the revelation that her cervical cancer might have been found and treated in time, but for the negligence of the State.

Worse, that same State and the US laboratories it employed, decided she would spend the rest of what little time she had left fighting in the courts as a test case to prove what had been done to her, and to 200 other women. And they were dogged in their legal pursuit of this dying woman who had been so grievously wronged. After a 36-day trial, Ruth Morrissey won her case in May of last year. The State was found responsible for the negligence and errors of the laboratories.

But the State was not done with her. A decision was taken by the laboratories and the State Claims Agency to appeal the High Court judgement, and so it dragged on until March 9 last when the appeal was dismissed by the Supreme Court. And last week we discovered that €2.16m in damages had finally been paid to the family. Then, on Sunday last, Ruth Morrissey died.