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Disabled Girl Whose Mum Was Sent Home by Hospital Wins Millions from NHS

HospitalGiving birth is always an anxious time and it is common for expectant mothers to be sent home by busy hospitals and told to come back later. That happened in one case in which lawyers representing a teenage girl who was effectively stillborn negotiated a multi-million-pound settlement of her claim against the NHS.

The 15-year-old girl’s mother had attended hospital the day before her birth, but had been sent home on the basis that labour was not established. Her lawyers claimed that the mother was by then suffering from a rare complication called acute fatty liver of pregnancy and that she should have been admitted straight away.

Had that happened, it was argued that her baby would have been born uninjured. In the event, however, she was delivered in very poor condition. Medics managed to resuscitate her, but she sustained grave brain damage. She was left suffering from quadriplegic cerebral palsy and will require professional care for the rest of her life.

The NHS trust that ran the hospital denied liability for her injuries but, following negotiations with her lawyers, agreed to a final settlement of her claim. She will receive a £2.4 million lump sum, plus index-linked and tax-free annual payments of £365,000 a year to cover the costs of her care for life. Although the girl’s life expectancy is dramatically reduced, her family is confident that, with good quality care, she will exceed experts’ estimates. The High Court approved the settlement.

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