Boy gets € 80,000 settlement for lazy eye treatment



A teenager has secured a € 80,000 settlement in his High Court lawsuit after an HSE eye clinic failed to take action when the boy was five to fix a lazy eye problem.

Judge Garrett Simons said Monday he was pleased to approve the HSE’s “very good” settlement offer to now 14-year-old Micheál Keane of Abbeyknockoy, County Galway.

It is unfortunate that there was no sanction for the “simple step” of wearing an eye patch over the boy’s good eye, forcing the other eye to work harder, the judge said.

However, this injury was “much less” than an eye injury valued at € 120,000 according to the Book of Quantum, which provides guidance on rewards for certain bodily injuries.

The judge said he understood that Micheál is a very bright kid who could very well have embraced a career as a pilot or a surgeon if he had better eyesight.

It was highly unlikely that the child would have gotten more if the case went to trial, there was a “significant risk” that he could have done worse and the court had “no hesitation” in approving this offer. settlement, said Justice Simons.

Earlier, the boy’s lawyer had said liability had been admitted, but the real issue in the case was the causation of the injury. Experts on both sides agreed that when the child was examined at the age of five, his good eye should have been repaired and the lazy eye worked harder and there was a wasted opportunity to improve his vision at this point.

His current vision is 6/36 to 6/18 with a lens, so there can be no certainty that he would have gotten 3D vision, the attorney said. Under the circumstances, the offer of € 80,000 was a good offer.

In the action, Micheál, taking legal action through his mother, Norrie Keane, alleged that he failed to properly examine the child, take into account his age and family background, did not had not diagnosed her condition and had not initiated appropriate treatment.

The child was five years old when he attended a school health exam for vision and hearing as part of an HSE screening service at Brierfield National School in Tuam. On examination, he had complete vision in his left eye and approximately 50% of his right vision.

He was referred to the HSE Eye Clinic in April 2012 with a referral note saying “lazy eyes”. On examination, his vision was recorded as complete in the left eye and it was noted that he was struggling with his right eye. Vision was recorded at 6 / 6-1 in his right eye and it was determined that no glasses were needed.

A report obtained from an ophthalmic surgeon for the procedure indicated that a diagnosis of amblyopia – lazy eye – had been correctly made and that it would have been correct at this point to use an eye patch, patching the correct eye. for a few hours a day to make it try and use the weak eye.

The younger such a treatment, the better because the longer it is left on, the weaker the weak eye becomes, the surgeon reported. A patch should have been introduced on this first visit at the age of five, with monitoring and treatment adjusted according to progress and lack of follow-up was “not acceptable,” he said. .

When Micheál was examined at the age of almost 10, it was noted that he did not and would not develop 3D vision, meaning that his judgment of depth or height will always be flawed, a has it been declared.

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