€117k over swab left inside Dublin woman

Sarah Daly leaving court yesterday. Picture: Courtpix

A woman who sued after a swab was left inside her after her baby was delivered at a Dublin hospital has been awarded €117,000 by the High Court.

Mr Justice Kevin Cross said what ought to have been a very joyous occasion for Sarah Daly with the birth of her baby had become something that will live with her for the rest of her life.

The judge said Ms Daly, aged 38, was entitled to be compensated for the wrongful insertion of the swab; the fact that it was not diagnosed despite her complaints for a considerable time, that no internal examination took place, and that she was discharged from hospital when the swab was removed without any antibiotic and developed a significant infection.

Ms Daly, a marketing manager of Rathfarnham, Dublin, had sued consultant Valerie Donnelly and Charles Julian Dockeray, who managed the delivery and was standing in for Ms Donnelly.

Mr Justice Cross said Ms Daly was admitted to Mount Carmel Hospital on April 22, 2013, and her baby was safely delivered.

Three days later, the judge said Ms Daly was in extreme pain and distress and was taken back to the hospital by her husband, but no internal examination was undertaken.

The judge said on April 28, in an internal examination, the swab, which was “offensive and malodorous” and the size of a plum, was removed.

He said the swab ought not to have been left inside Ms Daly and it should have been detected sooner, and would have been, had an internal examination been carried out on her first complaints.

The judge said he believed a total award of €117,000 was fair and reasonable.


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