Boy awarded €3.7m after treatment from Wexford Hospital

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Matthew McGrath settled his High Court action against the HSE when he was left paralysed due to the mismanagement of his meningitis at Wexford General Hospital. Matthew, through his mother, sued the HSE for personal injury, loss and damage caused by the negligence and breach of duty at the hospital.

The Court heard how Matthew was referred to Wexford General Hospital when he was 17 months old by his GP when he was noted to be drowsy and vomiting. Senior Counsel for the boy said that his condition deteriorated in hospital. The court heard that he was suffering from Haemophilus Influenza Type B, which can lead to meningitis and that he should have been treated with antibiotics and fluids. Mr Justice Kevin Cross was told that there was a delay in treating the condition and Desmond O’Neill, SC, told the Court that the devastating injuries could have been spared but for these delays.

Matthew remains ventilation-dependent and severe neurological injury resulted in paralysis of all four limbs.

There was an admission of liability in the case and an apology from the HSE saying that Wexford General Hospital wished to offer its sincere apology to Matthew and his parents. This apology was read out in court.

The court heard that €3.73 million is in part settlement of Matthew’s claim and the remainder of the case will be determined in five years’ time when the case comes back before the court. Mr Justice Cross said he has no hesitation in approving the settlement.

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