After nearly 20 years, a young woman from Torbay has received a six figure personal injury compensation settlement. The award means she will get a lump sum payment along with annual payments for the rest of her life.
The woman, referred to only as Miss P for legal reasons, had open-heart surgery to correct a congenital heart defect in March 1990 at the Bristol Royal Infirmary. At the time of the operation she was just 3 years old. As a direct result of the treatment she suffered serious brain damage and now has significant learning difficulties and a range of cognitive and behavioural problems.
She was not the only person to suffer medical negligence at the hospital; 35 babies died and dozens of children were left with brain damage, an inquiry discovered in 1991.
The General Medical Council later found the operating surgeon, Mr Janardan Dhasmana, guilty of serious misconduct and he was struck off their register and can no longer practice as a doctor in the UK. He did not appear, nor was he represented in the Royal Courts of Justice during Miss P’s personal injury claim.
Miss P’s personal injury solicitor, Laurence Vick, a clinical negligence expert, has spent over 12 years working on cases resulting from the Bristol scandal. Bristol Royal Infirmary insisted on fighting the case, despite all the evidence against them, and only agreed on a settlement a few weeks ago when the trial date grew imminent. However, the cases of the children who died were settled reasonably quickly after the 1991 inquiry.