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K.T. v. Lothian NHS Board [2009] CSOH 132


The pursuer is the mother of CK, born 11 May 1998, and sought reparation, as guardian for CK, from the defenders in respect of alleged negligence of anaesthetic and obstetric staff during the birth of CK, for which it was averred the defenders were liable as their employers. CK has cerebral palsy, is severely disabled and will have severe neurological impairment for the rest of her life. The issues for proof were restricted to liability and caustion. Here the court considered whether there had been professional negligence on the part of the obstetrician and the anaesthetist and whether any such negligence caused or contributed, to any extent, to the disabilities of CK. Here the court considered whether, in the emergency situation faced by the hospital staff during labour, certain acts and omissions alleged of the obstetrician and the anaesthetist were negligent and causative of the injuries and disabilities suffered by CK. Following proof it was submitted on behalf of the pursuer that both liability and causation were established and counsel invited the court to remit the cause for a proof before answer on quantum. It was submitted on behalf of the defenders that there was no evidence that the obstetrician was negligent on the limited grounds averred by the pursuer and any delay by the anaesthetist capable of causing the damage suffered by the child was not the consequence of any negligence for which the defenders were responsible and the defenders should be assoilzied.