Alexander Christmas (by his mother and next friend Nicki Christmas) v South West London Community NHS Trust (1999) QBD (Kennedy J) 8 November 1999
Claimant: Male, newborn at date of accident; 5 years old at date of settlement.
Incident: The claimant was born in the defendant hospital in February 1994. He was asphyxiated after staff failed to adequately monitor and interpret his CTG scan.
Injuries: The claimant suffered from acute cerebral palsy. He could not sit, stand or eat without assistance. His intellect remained intact but his life expectancy was assessed as 50-55 years.
Award: £3,000,000 total damages (out of court settlement) Claimant’s counsel: John Grace QC
Claimant’s solicitor: Boyes Turner & Burrows
Tracy Lynn Dashiell (by her father and next friend Thomas Dashiell) v Christine Luttit (widow and administratrix of the estate of William George Luttit deceased) (1999) QBD (Buckley J) 6 December 1999
Claimant: Female, 14 years old at date of accident; 20 years old at date of settlement.
Incident: The claimant was a passenger in a school minibus in 1993 when the driver had a heart attack and died, colliding with a bus. The driver had been aware of the possibility of a heart attack and the claimant brought an action alleging he was negligent.
Injuries: The claimant sustained severe brain damage and physical injuries in the accident. She was placed at a specialist care facility in November 1998. After the accident, the claimant required a tracheostomy and ventilator support. She had to re-learn how to speak, walk and feed herself. She was prone to violent mood swings and was unable to communicate her needs, requiring 24-hour care. She would never be able to engage in gainful employment.
Award: £5,000,000 total damages (out of court settlement)
Claimant’s counsel: Christopher Gardner QC and Bruce Silvester
Claimant’s solicitor: Harris & Cartwright
Mr Rick (Widower & executor of the estate of Mrs Rick deceased) v Frimley Park Hospital NHS Trust (1999) 8 November 1999
Claimant: Male, 65 years old at date of accident; 69 years old at date of settlement.
Incident: The claimant was the widower of the deceased (‘D’) who attended the defendant’s hospital on 14 May 1996 with an obstruction of the bowel. Medical notes recorded the need for prompt surgical intervention but this was not done until some time later. D did not recover from the operation and died. Liability disputed.
Injuries: D died as a result of sepsis and heart failure following a laparotomy.
Award: £29,000 total damages (out of court settlement)
Claimant’s counsel: Richard Partridge
Claimant’s solicitor: Penningtons, Godalming)