Court approves €6m settlement for woman with cerebral palsy

Nadine Wilkin (20) sued HSE over her care at time of her birth at Letterkenny General Hospital

A 20-year old Donegal woman who has cerebral palsy has settled for €6 million her High Court action against the HSE over her care at the time of her birth.

Nadine Wilkin, Abbey Park, Manorcunningham, Letterkenny, Co Donegal had through her mother Judith Wilkin sued the HSE over her care at the time of her birth at Letterkenny General Hospital on June 11th, 1996.

The settlement approved by Mr Justice Kevin Cross is without an admission of liability. The claims were denied.

Ms Wilkin’s parents, through their solicitor, said afterwards the settlement will give them comfort to know she will receive everything she needs to make her life more comfortable and she will be looked after even beyond their lifetime.

It was claimed there was an alleged delay in the delivery of Ms Wilkin by caesarean section and an alleged failure to treat her case an an emergency case.At 9.40am, it was claimed it was decided to carry out a caesarean section. The court heard Ms Wilkin’s mother was sent to theatre at 10 40am and her daughter was delivered at 11.28am.

Ms Wilkin’s counsel, Denis McCullough, said it was her case that if she was born before 10.15 am, brain damage would not have occurred. The HSE disputed this.

He said Ms Wilkin is a bright young woman who has dyskinetic cerebral palsy and is in a wheelchair. Counsel said she has high care needs and has to be fed through a tube.

Approving the settlement, Mr Justice Cross said Ms Wilkin looked a very happy young lady and he had no hesitation in approving the settlement which he said at the minimum represented about 75 per cent of the full value of the case. He wished her every success for the future and praised her parents and carers for the great work they had put in to her care in the past.