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NHS Looses £2,350,000 Brain Injury Clinical Negligence Compensation Case


Manchester, UK. January 19 2006 - The High Court in London today awarded 26 year old Andre Crofton a severely brain injured young man, the sum of £2.35 Million in compensation for injuries sustained as a result of delay in undertaking repair of a heart defect.

His case was handled by Julia Hurstfield, a personal injury solicitor that specialises in clinical negligence compensation cases with Pannone & Partners, the Manchester based law firm. She commented: “Whilst £2.35 Million in compensation is important for this Claimant, because it will secure and safeguard his future, the basis upon which his compensation award has been made is just as important, not only for Andre, but also for many others who are perusing an NHS clinical negligence compensation claim.

“Andre suffered diffuse brain damage affecting both cerebral hemispheres and has a mental age of a young child. He is only able to walk short distances and even then only with a lot of support. He has limited use of his arms and his language development and usage are those of a young child. In addition, his vision is very poor and he is registered partially blind. He is totally dependent upon others for all of his care needs.”

The Action progressed to Trial in London in October 2005, on issues of how much compensation he should receive, an earlier compromise having been reached between the Parties that he would recover 67.5% of his total damages based on the complex issues raised in the case.

The main arguments between the Parties centred on whether he was entitled to recover from the Defendant who was responsible for his injury, monies to enable him to live in his own accommodation, purchased and specially adapted for his needs together with a care regime, designed and tailored to meet his specific requirements. Or whether he had to continue to live in the currently provided accommodation which was provided by a charitable organisation and a Housing Association paid for by his Local Authority together with a grant from the Supporting People Organisation which is run by the Office for the Deputy Prime Minister.

Judge Reid QC stated today: “His own accommodation and care is what is required to meet his reasonable needs.”

£2.35 Million compensation was awarded on that basis, although the Judge then deducted from the agreed annual care costs figure, the actual costs currently being paid by the Local Authority, on the basis that this funding arrangement will probably continue irrespective of the Andre’s place of residence.

It may well be despite the overall success for this Claimant, that this aspect of the Judgment is something that will be the subject of an Appeal which is currently under consideration. Julia Hurstfield from Pannone & Partners said: “It is our belief that was not the evidence before the Court or indeed, the reality of the situation for this individual.”

She commented further today: “This Judgment is very welcome. It is an argument that is on the increase i.e. the Local Authority will provide; we do not need to pay you. I do not believe that to be the correct approach as the Claimant is entitled to restitution and should not be dependent upon the State whose budget is being constantly reduced and is generally overburdened.”

Mr Simon Taylor QC and Lisa Sullivan of Cloisters at 1 Pump Court in London represented the Claimant in this case.

Julia Hurstfield is a personal injury solicitor specialising in clinical and medical negligence compensation cases with Pannone & Partners Solicitors, the Manchester based law firm that is best know for its work on the Lockerbie air disaster and the John Stalker case.

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