Father awarded €110k after son’s Hep C/HIV death

The High Court has awarded €110,000 in damages to a father of a man who contracted hepatitis C and HIV.

The man had had a claim rejected by the Hepatitis C Compensation Tribunal but the High Court ruled he was entitled to damages for nervous shock and distress following his son’s death.

In a judgement, Mr Justice Michael Hanna said that he was satisfied the father was entitled to compensation over the “tragic death” of his son in 1994. His son, who had haemophilia, contracted Hepatitis C and HIV from contaminated blood he was given.

The judge said the father had suffered from moderate post-traumatic stress following his son’s death. It was not the most serious case, but was “a significant one”.

The father had sought compensation from the Hepatitis C and HIV Compensation Tribunal for the post-traumatic stress and nervous shock he suffered following his son’s death.

In 2013, the tribunal dismissed the father’s application for compensation after finding he had failed to establish he suffered a psychiatric injury above the effects of normal grief, distress and bereavement.

Compensation for loss of society was awarded by the tribunal in favour of the father. The father, in proceedings against the minister for health and the tribunal, appealed the decision to the High Court.

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