UK: NHS pays £39M to girl who had limbs amputated after hospital mistake

The NHS has had to pay a eight-figure-sum to a girl who was wrongfully discharged from hospital and had to have her limbs amputated.

She was taken to Frimley Park Hospital in Surrey with “red flags for meningitis and sepsis”, including a high temperature and heart rate, leg pain, and drowsiness after vomiting.

The hospital later discharged the girl, giving her paracetamol to take.

When the girl’s parents took her back to A&E a few hours later she was diagnosed with meningococcal sepsis.

She was then rushed to the paediatric intensive care unit at another hospital and suffered from multi-organ failure, requiring a number of procedures including skin grafts.

She later required amputations above the knee on both her legs and above both of her elbows.

As a result, her family brought a claim against Frimley Health NHS Foundation Trust and argued that the amputations could have been avoided if the hospital had acted sooner and treated her with antibiotics.

In a letter heard in court, the trust’s Chief Executive Neil Dardis admitted that the girl’s care “fell below the standard (the girl) was entitled to expect”.

The trust admitted liability and an agreement was reached.

The settlement reached around £39million, some as a lump sum and the rest as annual payments for the rest of the girl’s life.

Elizabeth-Anne Gumbel KC, said: “It’s a very sad case in which the claimant sadly lost all four of her limbs after not being diagnosed promptly enough in relation to meningitis.”

A spokesperson for the NHS trust said: “We are very sorry for the claimant’s injuries and we understand no amount of money can fully compensate for them.

“However we are pleased that the settlement has been approved and we hope the agreed damages will ensure that the claimant can live as independently as possible in the future.”



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