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€564k for family of op tragedy mum

THE family of a mother-of-three who died after undergoing a surgical procedure on her bowel has secured €564,000 in a High Court settlement.

Derek Jackson, of Herbert Place, Navan, Meath, along with members of his family, sued Our Lady's Hospital, Navan, for mental distress and breach of duty arising from the death of his wife Miriam (39) in September 2004.

Liability was conceded in the case, which opened before Mr Justice Iarfhlaith O'Neill last Friday and was for assessment only. When it resumed yesterday, Jack Fitzgerald, for Mr Jackson, told the judge the case had been settled for €564,000.

The court heard it was an extremely sad case involving a death, which should not have occurred, of a young woman who was employed as a higher executive officer in the Department of Social Welfare.

She was admitted to the hospital on August 31, 2004 with a complicated chronic small bowel obstruction with adhesions.

On September 4, she had surgery to divide the adhesions and four days later a laparotomy was performed.

On September 12, she developed severe abdominal pain and her condition deteriorated, becoming more pronounced in the early hours of the next day. She died on September 15.

It was claimed the hospital had allowed septicaemia to develop and go untreated for a significant period of time and that there was delay in a medical review/assessment of her critical condition.