A man has secured a €300,000 settlement against a defibrillator manufacturer and supplier of his action over the death of his wife after she suffered a cardiac arrest in her workplace cafeteria.
In High Court proceedings, Brendan Farrell claimed his wife Elaine O’Keeffe, a 39-year-old mother-of-two, was deprived of an opportunity of survival because a defibrillator in the cafeteria in Bray, Co Wicklow, did not work when she suffered cardiac arrest there on October 10, 2012.
There was a significant issue in terms of establishing causation of death arising from the alleged defective defibrillator, the court was told this week.
Mr Farrell claimed the defibrillator failed to operate when it was used to attempt to resuscitate Ms O’Keeffe. Her death that same day was certified as being the result of acute heart failure by reason of a floppy mitral valve.
A medical report obtained by the plaintiff from a cardiologist expressed the opinion that, had a functioning defibrillator been available, Ms O’Keeffe’s prospects of survival would have increased by some 38pc.
Represented by Finbarr Fox SC, Mr Farrell, of Hillside, Greystones, Co Wicklow, sued on behalf of himself and the couple’s two children. The bulk of the claim was for financial dependency arising from the death of Ms Farrell.
The case was taken against Takeda Ireland Ltd, for whom Ms O’Keeffe worked at the time as a quality assurance department manager; and against HSS Management Ltd trading as Heart Safety Solutions (HSS) and HeartSine Technologies Ltd, respectively the supplier and manufacturer of the defibrillator.
Mr Justice Kevin Cross was asked by Mr Fox to approve an offer of €300,000, plus costs, from HSS and HeartSine to settle the case.