Settlement received for delay of treatment claim

This was a claim brought under the Fatal Accidents Act and Law Reform (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act by the widower of the deceased and his four dependent children following the death of his wife in 2008 of metastatic breast cancer. The claim arose out of failures by the breast clinic to carry out a core biopsy on presentation, causing a delay of 14 months to diagnose and treat her breast cancer. With appropriate care, the deceased would have survived with a normal life expectancy. Liability was denied until the defence but causation was disputed in its entirety throughout. Expert evidence was obtained from a breast surgeon, radiologist, histopathologist and an oncologist. A Care Expert was instructed to provide evidence of the loss of services claim. The issue of causation was fiercely fought with much reliance upon the relevant literature regarding metastatic spread and chances of survival. The case was set down for final hearing and settled at a joint settlement meeting shortly after experts’ meetings.