Our medical negligence solicitors helped a woman make a compensation claim against an NHS Trust after she suffered a serious stroke causing permanent brain damage.
Sarah was a manager of a leading clothing retailer and was pregnant with her first child. She had no complications with her pregnancy and delivered her daughter, Mila, by caesarean section (C-section).
Doctors transferred Sarah to a ward after her caesarean and they told her the surgery and delivery was a success.
Overnight, Sarah developed a high temperature and an increased heart rate. This continued the next day but started to improve so doctors told Sarah she could go home.
Sarah visited her local doctor a few days later to get antibiotics because her caesarean wound had become infected. Three days later, she went to hospital to have her wound drained because it was getting worse. She returned again for a consultation where doctors told her she was okay.
Five days after her consultation, Sarah had a stroke at home. The stroke caused brain damage and mobility issues to the right side of Sarah’s body.
The stroke was a huge shock for Sarah and her partner. They were both getting used to being parents to their new baby, but now Sarah’s stroked had left her with speech, coordination and memory problems. Doctors told her that the damage would be permanent.
How We Helped
Sarah and her partner contacted our medical negligence team to find out if we could help them make a claim against the hospital.
Since her stroke, Sarah had to quit her job because she couldn’t deal with the fast-paced environment. She also lost a lot of her independence and needed rehabilitation to help her cope with day-to-day activities. On top of this, she also had to look after her new born baby.
Jenna Harris, specialist medical negligence solicitor, investigated the incident. She gathered evidence from independent medical experts who said doctors should’ve taken Sarah’s high heart rate as a warning sign. Instead, they sent her home.
We made a claim against the University Hospital North Staffordshire NHS Trust. They refused to admit responsibility and so the claim went to trial.
Court Trials and Initial Success
At the trial, the judge awarded Sarah with interim payments to help fund her rehabilitation. Interim payments can help pay for immediate medical care and rehabilitation while the claim is ongoing.
This success helped Sarah get the expert care she needed to regain some of her mobility. Sarah said:
“The effects of my stroke have a huge impact on my life. Even things like dressing myself, brushing my teeth or making myself a hot drink are a problem now.”
Final Settlement in the Millions
The interim payments were a huge help to Sarah and her family but the NHS Trust still refused to make a final settlement.
After a seven year legal battle with the Trust, Jenna negotiated a six-figure settlement. The judge agreed with Jenna’s argument that if the hospital had fully investigated Sarah’s heart rate, they could’ve picked up that she had an infection.
Sarah and her partner were overjoyed with the final sum. This would mean Sarah could access the very best rehabilitation and do a lot more activities with her daughter Mila, who was now seven years old.
“Sarah was badly let down in the standard of care she received, which meant she experienced a life-changing moment for all the wrong reasons.
“It is important that there is not a loss of confidence in the NHS but it is also important that the NHS Trusts learns lessons from the care it provided Sarah so no other families don’t have to suffer the years of hurt that Sarah [has]”
If you or a loved one has suffered from a birth injury call us today on 0370 1500 100 or contact us online.
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