Compensation for Hospital Emergency Room Medical Negligence Approved

The widow of a man, who passed due to avoidable circumstances after being admitted to hospital with abdominal pains, has had a settlement of compensation for hospital emergency room medical negligence death due to septic shock approved by a court in Ireland.

Barry Murphy was just 38 years of age when taken to hospital in April 2008 complaining of pains in his abdomen. Barry was diagnosed with a perforated bowel, and even though the hospital was aware that Barry suffered from Crohn´s Disease, it was not until much later that day that surgery was ordered.

Due to the delay in medical treatment, Barry experienced a septic shock – a condition where clots form in narrow arteries and prevent the flow of blood resulting in low blood pressure and organ failure, and one which doctors knowledgeable of his Crohn´s Disease should have taken into account. Barry was pronounced dead at 11.15pm on the same day as he was brought to hospital.

Barry’s wife, Mary, alleged that the hospital was negligent in treating her husband, failed to operate on him within an acceptable time frame and was responsible for his death. After seeking counsel from medical negligence solicitors, Mary claimed compensation for wrongful death due to septic shock – a claim which the hospital denied for three years, during which time Mary sustained a psychological injury and was diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.

However, after constant pressure and an internal examination, the hospital stated that “the level of care provided fell short of an acceptable standard” and negotiated a settlement of 500,000 Euros compensation for wrongful death due to septic shock with the family.

At the High Court, where the settlement was approved by Mr Justice John Quirk, the hospital also stated that they “apologise unreservedly to Mrs Murphy, their two daughters and the late Mr Murphy’s extended family”.

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