A man from Caerphilly, who was born with nerve damage that manifested as paralysis has settled his claim for hospital negligence at birth against the Royal Gwent Hospital.
Jamie Lewis was born in 1991 at the Royal Gwent Hospital in Newport, South Wales, with nerve damage in his neck and shoulders due to doctors at the hospital using excessive force during his delivery to free him when he became trapped in the birth canal.
The nerve damage resulted in Jamie from Blackwood, Caerphilly, suffering paralysis in his left arm and hand; which, as he grew up, stopped him from pursuing the normal activities of childhood, hindered his social development and made him a target for bullies.
When Jamie was four years old, his mother – Cheryl Lewis-Thomas – attempted to make a claim for hospital negligence at birth on behalf of her son, but was told that legal action was unlikely to succeed and she took the claim no further.
Several years later however, Cheryl was encouraged to attempt legal action once again and when Jamie turned eighteen years of age (he is now 23), he made a claim for hospital negligence at birth against the Aneurin Bevan University Health Board.
Jamie´s solicitors successfully made the case that the delivery team at the Royal Gwent Hospital had been negligent and “in the circumstances and at the time” had failed to follow the correct procedures when Jamie became stuck in the birth canal.
The legal team were able to provide evidence that his mother´s doctors could have used an alternative method of releasing Jamie from the birth canal which “on the balance of probabilities” would have avoided Jamie suffering the nerve damage which resulted in his paralysis.
The Aneurin Bevan University Health Board – which has now taken over responsibility for the healthcare provided at the Royal Gwent Hospital – accepted liability for Jamie´s birth injuries and an out of court settlement of his claim for hospital negligence at birth amounting to £450,000 was negotiated