Justice for Philip

A FAMILY who won more than £3.3million in damages for the care of their brain damaged son today spoke of their relief that his future is now secure.Carole Revett has spent the past seven years fighting for compensation for her son Philip, who suffered severe neurological damage as a result of an operation at Guy's Hospital in London in 1987.

A FAMILY who won more than £3.3million in damages for the care of their brain damaged son today spoke of their relief that his future is now secure.

Carole Revett has spent the past seven years fighting for compensation for her son Philip, who suffered severe neurological damage as a result of an operation at Guy's Hospital in London in 1987.

Yesterday the managers of Guy's Hospital, the South East London Strategic Health Authority, agreed a settlement with the Revett family for £3.375million for Philip's future care.

Today, speaking exclusively to The Evening Star, Mrs Revett said: “We are very pleased with the outcome, which has meant that we have finally got what we wanted for Philip, which is security.


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“The family now has the peace of mind of knowing that Philip's needs will be met for the rest of his life.”

Philip, now aged 19, was born with Down's syndrome in December 1985, and had heart defects common amongst those suffering form the condition.

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In February 1987, he was left brain damaged when doctors failed to monitor his temperature during corrective heart surgery at Guy's Hospital. The hospital admitted liability for the injuries in June 2003.

Philip has been left unable to look after himself in any way, he can speak very little and is confined to a wheelchair. He needs constant specialist care and treatment as well as round-the-clock care from his family. The damages awarded in the settlement represent the cost of the specialist care for the rest of his life.

During yesterday's hearing at London's High Court Philip's barrister, Margaret Bowron QC told Mr Justice Bell that the court negotiations had been complicated by the fact that, due to his Down's syndrome, Philip would have suffered some disabilities in any event.

But she said there was no doubt that the hospital negligence had caused a grave brain injury which had “affected his life in every possible way”.

Sharon Cutts, a clinical negligence specialist with lawyers Kester Cunningham John who managed the case, welcomed the settlement and said the past 18 years had been extremely stressful for the family.

She said: “The family are absolutely delighted. Carole has struggled to cope with Philip's needs over the years and the family have been left to do quite a lot of his care for themselves.

“From their perspective this means there is security for Philip's future. It's been a very stressful time but the family are very relieved that they can now put some sort of normality to their life without having to worry about tomorrow.”

Mr David Westcott QC, for the health authority, apologised on the authority's behalf for the “lack of care” Philip received and said his clients were delighted the case had been settled without having to put the family through the trauma of a contested court hearing.

Approving the settlement, Mr Justice Bell said he “never ceased to be amazed” by the selflessness of parents who give their lives to the care of disabled children.

A JUBILANT Carole Revett today paid special tribute to The Evening Star's “brilliant” readers who she said were crucial in achieving a damages settlement for her son Philip.

The Star fought for Philip and his family to get compensation through our “Justice for Philip” campaign.

His sister, Lauren, was one of the Star's Kid in a Million finalists in 2002 when she was 14.

Carole said: “The family would like to express our delight and gratitude to two groups in particular.

“First, to our legal team for their hard work, commitment and professionalism over such a long time.

“And second, to all the readers of the Evening Star, who have been so supportive throughout our campaign for justice because Philip's plight had so touched them. They have been brilliant.

“Without these two groups and their support, this outcome would not have been achieved.”

December 1985: Philip Revett was born with mild Down's syndrome and a small hole

1987: Philip went into Guy's Hospital for an operation to correct his heart problem, during that operation he sustained brain damage

1998: Family begin legal claim for compensation against Guy's Hospital

2000: Philip is one of the Star's Kids in a Million

2002: Philip's sister Lauren is named a Kid in a Million finalist by The Evening Star

October 21, 2005: Family prepare to make legal history by taking Philip's case for compensation to the High Court in London but the hearing is abandoned when a settlement deal is reached

October 25, 2005: Revett family and South East London Strategic Health Authority agree settlement for £3.375million in damages

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