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Multi-million pound pay-out for disabled boy
A LITTLE boy left in a wheelchair after suffering a brain haemorrhage in his mother's womb, has been guaranteed a massive NHS compensation payout to fund the lifetime of care and assistance he will need.
Joshua Hurd, from Ringwood, cannot stand or walk, has grave learning difficulties and suffers from seizures due to the injuries he suffered prior to his birth by caesarian section at Dorset County Hospital, in Dorchester, on May 7, 2002.
Joshua, who was his mother Georgina's first child, sued the hospital's managers, Dorset County Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, claiming that negligence by the hospital's staff led to his delivery being catastrophically delayed.
The trust admitted that the 11-yearold ought to have been delivered some four hours earlier than he was, London's High Court heard this week, but disputed that the delay made any difference to the tragic outcome.
However, before Mr Justice Dingemans at London's High Court, the two sides reached a settlement whereby the trust agreed to pay damages on the basis of 50 per cent of a full valuation of Joshua's claim.
Given the severity of Joshua's disabilities and the enormous projected costs of his future care, the deal guarantees him a very substantial damages award, which will almost certainly run into millions of pounds, even after a 50 per cent deduction.
David Westcott QC, for Joshua, told the judge that the family had decided to settle because of the risks that they might lose the case and be left with nothing. “This is sensible settlement of a jolly difficult case,” the barrister said.
“Joshua has sought to hold the trust responsible for his injuries. The trust admitted that Joshua should have been delivered some four hours before he was, but denied liability on causation grounds,” he told the judge.
Mr Justice Dingemans approved the terms of the compromise, saying: “I can see good sense on both sides in coming to this settlement. I’m very happy to approve it.”
The exact sum of compensation due to Joshua will be assessed by a judge at a later date, unless a final agreement is reached before then
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