APIL president Brett Dixon said:
“Bereaved parents and the parents of injured children are often desperate for answers above all else, so independent investigations which involve families from the outset are most welcome. Early investigations into birth injuries should also help to encourage early admissions of liability and rehabilitation, both of which are essential for families to move forward after needless injury.
We support promises of early investigations, apologies, and shared learning in the proposed rapid resolution and redress scheme for severe birth injury, but the approach to damages is crude when compared to the proper assessment of a child’s needs which comes with litigation. The original proposed scheme would only pay 90 per cent of an average court settlement. When damages for long-term need must be calculated carefully to meet their purpose, 90 per cent of the average settlement would be far away from the correct level of compensation for most families. We are prepared to engage further with the Department of Health to help ensure any scheme is fit for purpose”.