Girl to receive millions of pounds in damages following traumatic birth at James Paget Hospital

The James Paget University Hospital at Gorleston. Picture: James Bass.

The James Paget University Hospital at Gorleston. Picture: James Bass. - Credit: Eastern Daily Press © 2011

A young girl who faces a lifetime of disability following her traumatic birth at a Great Yarmouth hospital will receive millions in damages from the NHS.

The seven-year-old suffered a serious brain injury when she was born at the James Paget Hospital in 2009.

As a result, she has been left with severe disabilities and will need round-the-clock care for the rest of her life.

Through her mother, she sued the James Paget University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust - which manages the hospital - alleging negligence.

The trust agreed to settle the case, avoiding the need for a trial, by paying a £2.1m lump sum.

The girl will also receive index-linked and tax-free payments of £95,000-a-year to cover the costs of her care for life.

Those payments will increase to £110,000-a-year as she gets older and her care needs increase.

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The settlement was today approved by Mr Justice Edis, sitting at the High Court, in London.

Alexander Hutton, representing the trust, said: 'I would like to make an apology on behalf of the trust, in relation to the failures of care that led to the claimant's very grave injuries and severe disabilities.

'We are extremely sorry that that happened in the trust's care.'

He told the court there had been a 'great deal of soul searching' in the hospital's midwifery and obstetrics departments following the girl's birth and that the trust has done its utmost to ensure there is no repeat of the failings.

Mr Justice Edis said the payment of the lump sum could be delayed due to a possible change in legal guidelines, but that the girl will receive some money immediately to fund her care.

He added: 'She urgently needs the professional assistance which is going to be funded by these payments.'

He said the quality of the girl's life, and those caring for her, would be 'substantially improved' by the settlement.

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