€63,000 post operation negligence compensation has been given to 58-year-old Ms Concepta Anderson at the High Court after she picked up a permanent scar in an accident during her post operative treatment at St James’s Hospital in Dublin as she as recovering form the removal of a heart pacemaker.
Ms Anderson, with an address at Sooey, Co Sligo, began the compensation action against St James’s hospital after she experienced a syncope episode, a heart stoppage leading to a blackout, and fell to the floor when she using a hospital toilet on May 18th, 2014.
The accident happened during her recovery period following a procedure to remove her permanent pacemaker. Ms Anderson was waiting for her new pacemaker to be put in when ther accident took place, leaving her with a head injury and has a permanent cut on her head.
Presiding Judge Justice Anthony Barr told the Court, in his reserved judgment, that he was aware that Ms Anderson had a known history of falls and syncope and should have represented a potential fall risk after her pacemaker was removed.
However, the Judge said that he was of the opinion that there was negligence on behalf of her consultant cardiologist in not ensuring that clear directions were provided to nursing staff that Ms Anderson was a fall high risk case and therefore should be told to remain in her bed and only allowed to walk about with proper help.
However, as no such warning was provided, Ms Anderson was not told to stay in bed and was permitted move freely within the range of her telemetry monitor. The judge said that this put her in serious danger.
He added that claimant was lucky that she was in the bathroom when she experience the syncope episode. The Judge went on to say that he did not accept the additional claims of negligence in relation to a decision not to place a temporary wire after the removal of the pacemaker and before the replacement device was put in. Ms Anderson was impacted with a moderate head injury in the accident, he added.
He awarded her postoperative medical negligence compensation of €63,112.