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Birth Injury Claims

Case: Child receives compensation for Erb's Palsy Birth Injury

We recently helped our client claim compensation through his litigation friend following a birth injury that he sustained at a UK hospital.

The child, an 11 year old boy, received £575,000 (less an interim payment) lump sum compensation payment for a right brachial plexus injury which he suffered during the course of his birth in February 1999.

This claim was brought against the hospital trust for the child's injuries alleging the birth was mismanaged as a result of which his delivery was compromised by shoulder dystocia. He alleged that this caused damage to the right shoulder which gave rise to a right sided Erb’s Palsy Injury. The injury resulted in severe loss of function in his right shoulder and arm and has since caused a depressive reaction.

The child's injury affected his ability to function. He struggled with all bi-manual activity. There was also asymmetrical posture with the right shoulder being lower than the left. He was limited in the sports activities he could undertake and his progress at school was hampered by his problems with written work and the fact that he became depressed at his inability to do what other boys could. Employment prospects are limited and it was thought that he would not be able to undertake any physical employment.

Because the full extent of his injury could not be ascertained we delayed the case until we knew for sure how his injuries would impede his life. Following assessment over time the Orthopaedic Experts concluded that his injury was permanent and would not improve.

The hospital trust admitted liability for his injuries and through negotiation an Out of Court settlement was reached. This settlement had to be approved by the court because the child is a minor.

Neil Fearn, Head of Medical Negligence at Simpson Millar and the Solicitor who acted for the child said: "The compensation our client received will hopefully mean that he has a much more secure future and can realise his full potential in life. He should now have the resources to put in place equipment and assistance to help him in all the areas where it is needed. We wish him and his family all the very best for the future."

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