Claims News

Family Settles Compensation Claim for Injuries due to a Mismanaged Birth

Posted on: November 27th, 2013

A family from County Laois have settled their compensation claim for injuries due the mismanaged birth of their daughter – Roisin – who suffers from cerebral palsy due to medical negligence.

On 10th November 2001, Mary Conroy attended the Midland Regional Hospital in Portloaise believing that her membranes had ruptured. She was reassured that they had not and sent home. Three days later, Mary attended the clinic of Dr John Corristine – her private consultant obstetrician attached to the Midland Regional Hospital – for an ultrasound.

Mary insisted that she be admitted to hospital following the ultrasound, and underwent a CTG scan which failed to show evidence of contractions. Dr Corristine ordered the administration of medicine to help induce labour, but the consultant was not seen again – either throughout Mary´s labour or during the birth of her daughter.

Roisin Conroy was born on 14th November 2001, but in a poor condition and suffered seizures shortly after her birth. She was transferred to a hospital in Dublin, but her condition failed to improve and Roisin was diagnosed with dyskinetic cerebral palsy. As a result of her birth injuries, Roisin (now 12) is permanently disabled and can only communicate through her eyes.

Mary and Kevin Conroy both gave up their jobs to care for their daughter; believing for many years that they had been “just unlucky”, as no explanation for Roisin´s injuries had been provided either by the hospital or by Dr Corristine. However, after seeking legal advice and initiating an investigation into the circumstances prior to Roisin´s delivery, the couple discovered that they were entitled to make a compensation claim for injuries due to a mismanaged birth.

Their compensation claim for injuries due to a mismanaged birth was filed in 2011, but the Health Service Executive (HSE) only admitted liability five weeks before a hearing was scheduled to take place. The Conroy´s legal advisors then negotiated a preliminary settlement of compensation which would cover the cost of Roisin´s care and provide medical and educational support for the next two years – in lieu of a structured compensation system being introduced.

At the High Court in Dublin, Ms Justice Mary Irvine approved the interim settlement of €2.6 million after an apology had been read out to the family by Dr Corristine and a representative of the HSE. However, in a statement made outside the court after the compensation claim for injuries due to a mismanaged birth had been heard, Kevin Conroy said that if the HSE had admitted liability earlier, Roisin would have received a better level of care which would have improved her condition sooner.

This is an Information site only – if you feel you have a potential claim, you should discuss your situation with a solicitor registered with the Law Society of Ireland.