Our Birth Injury claims team have secured a multimillion pound settlement for a girl who suffered severe brain damage due to mistakes made by medical staff when she was born.
Martha, now 7, contracted a serious Group B Streptococcus infection during birth. This in turn caused a case of meningitis. Group B Streptococcus (also known as Group B Strep or GBS) is the most common form of infection in new-borns in Britain, but only 15% of cases involve complications like those that Martha faced.
Martha’s parents, Helen and Adam, were informed of the complications a day after birth. However, a series of mistakes and delays by doctors at the Royal Surrey County Hospital meant that their daughter’s condition continued to get worse.
Martha was so severely ill that she was placed in an induced coma and spent the next two months in an incubator in hospital. Now seven years old, Martha has severe brain damage, cerebral palsy and a reduced life expectancy because of the mistakes made during her treatment.
In another devastating blow, Helen later learned that Martha’s condition could have been prevented if she had been given antibiotics during labour.
The Royal Surrey County Hospital NHS Foundation Trust admitted responsibility for Martha’s injuries and her parents contacted our Medical Negligence solicitors to negotiate a compensation settlement to cover the lifelong care costs that their family faced.
We obtained a structured seven-figure settlement for the family that will provide regular payments for disability aid, therapy and home adaptations and continue to provide Martha with the care she needs for the rest of her life.
“It turned our world upside-down,” said Helen. “Martha can be a very happy and content child who enjoys her life as much as she can but this has destroyed her life and ours as a family.”
“Martha father has had to give up his work to care for Martha and I have had to reduce the hours I work. Some people wrongly think compensation is a windfall but it is not. It ensures Martha is able to access the support and care needed for her, for as long as she lives.”
Alison Eddy, a Partner in our Medical Negligence team, said:
“Had Helen or Martha received the antibiotics, Martha would have been like any other healthy, happy baby and no doubt gone on to live a full independent life with a job, family – everything any other person would experience.
"The settlement package will fund Martha’s ongoing care and therapy; along with any adaptations she may need to her home, for the rest of her life which will enable her to live more comfortably.
"I hope that lessons are learnt from the terrible and life-changing errors made in this case in order to improve patient safety in the future and stop any other child suffering such a distressing and avoidable injury.”
If your child has been affected by negligent Group B Strep treatment, our Group B Strep claims team may be able to help you make a compensation claim. Get in touch online to find out more.
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