Hospital apologises for second time over birth of girl with cerebral palsy

South Tipperary General Hospital settles case of ‘gross deficits’ in Katie Manton’s birth

Ray and Aoife Manton, of Dualla Road, Cashel, Co Tipperary, look on as solicitor Anne M Fitzpatrick talks to the media outside the Four Courts on Thursday. Photograph: Collins Courts

Ray and Aoife Manton, of Dualla Road, Cashel, Co Tipperary, look on as solicitor Anne M Fitzpatrick talks to the media outside the Four Courts on Thursday. Photograph: Collins Courts

 

South Tipperary General Hospital apologised in the High Court on Thursday for a second time to the family of a nine-year-old Tipperary girl with cerebral palsy for “gross deficits” in care provided at the time of her birth.

In its apology, the hospital acknowledged the suffering Katie Manton “has and will endure for the rest of her life” and also apologised to her parents without reservation.

Over two years ago, the child settled her action against the Health Service Executive over the circumstances of her birth with an award of €6.7million.

On Thursday her mother, Aoife Manton of George’s Land, Dualla Road, Cashel, Co Tipperary, settled her action against the HSE over the management of her daughter’s birth. The terms are confidential.

Outside court, Aoife and Ray Manton said they will never forgive the HSE for what happened.

“They apologised, but it is only words. At 3am in the morning when Katie is having a seizure what am I meant to do with that apology?” Mrs Manton said. She said they were extremely angry at what happened and the catastrophic injury suffered by Katie.

The family also called on the HSE to publish in detail its protocols, recruitment policies and the steps it has taken to ensure this never happens again. They said they wanted these measures “to give confidence to other expectant mothers”.

In court earlier, the latest apology was read by HSE counsel Patrick Hanratty SC on behalf of South Tipperary General Hospital.

Delivery deficits

“We wish to apologise without reservation not just for the gross deficits in the care provided by this hospital in the treatment of Aoife Manton and in the delivery of her daughter Katie”, it said, but also for other matters including “the deficits in our recruitment policy”.

It also apologised for the “failure of this hospital to follow the protocol requiring references from two consultants, obtaining a reference from only one consultant concerning the professional capacity of the obstetric registrar who treated Mrs Manton and also for a mistake made in communicating the full name of the obstetric registrar who delivered Katie”.

“We acknowledge the suffering that Katie has and will endure for the rest of her life. We have already apologised for that in her proceedings and we repeat the apology now,” it said.

It added: “The pain , distress and ongoing anger that both Aoife and Ray Manton are enduring is understood by the hospital. We apologise to both of them without reservation.”