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Bereaved family welcome hospital’s admission regarding their brother’s neglect leading to his death

Posted in News on Tuesday, March 7th, 2023

Marian Fogarty and Ger Falvey acted for the Doyle family regarding the wrongful death of their late brother Patrick Doyle aged only 47.  This tragic case relates to a bachelor farmer, Patrick Doyle, who needlessly died at the age of 47 because of failings in the treatment he received at St Luke’s Hospital Kilkenny (SLHK) in 2016. Patrick had complained of stomach pain in 2016.   He attended to St Luke’s Hospital on the 12th September 2016 and again on 15th November 2016.  He was told that he had gallstone pancreatitis and was put on a waiting list for surgery. He was not afforded treatment in a timely manner and continued to suffer and indeed deteriorated.   While on the waiting list to have his gallbladder removed Patrick collapsed and was admitted to SLHK on the 7th March 2017, with severe upper abdominal pain.  By then he had necrotising pancreatitis. His condition went downhill from that time on.  His loving family begged for him to be moved to a Hospital that could treat him and he was eventually transferred to Tallaght University Hospital, but despite their best efforts, it was too late and Patrick sadly passed away on the 20th June 2017. This death could have been avoided if St Luke’s Hospital had treated the late Patrick Doyle properly during his 2016 admissions to the hospital.

The Plaintiff, Lillie Collins, is the only sister of the late Patrick Doyle Deceased.  He resided at Killeshin, Co. Carlow prior to his death and worked as a farmer.

Lillie Collins brought a fatal claim under Part IV of the Civil Liability Act 1961 on her own behalf and on behalf of the statutory dependants of the Deceased (Patrick Doyle)  against St Luke’s Hospital Kilkenny arising from substandard care afforded to the Deceased in 2016 at the hospital.

The case was listed for hearing to commence before Dublin High Court on the 7th February 2023, but settled some days before then.  An apology on behalf of St. Luke’s Hospital Kilkenny was read out in open court by Counsel for the hospital regarding the care the Deceased received at the hospital when the matter was mentioned before the High Court on Tuesday morning 7th February 2023.

The Plaintiff’s expert evidence was to the effect that the Deceased was not treated appropriately on his admissions to the Hospital. If he was treated appropriately, his death in June 2017 would have been avoided.

Comments of the Plaintiff:

Lillie Collins stated:

My family and I witnessed from September 2016 the failure of St. Luke’s Hospital, Kilkenny to treat my brother Patrick’s deteriorating condition appropriately. Patrick and I together with other family members had been reassured by the hospital that Patrick’s condition was not serious.  At a later stage, noticing his further deterioration at St. Luke’s Hospital, we requested that he be transferred to a Dublin hospital where he further deteriorated and died in June 2017.  Following my brother’s death in June 2017, I made a complaint to St Luke’s Hospital in respect of my late brother’s care and treatment at that hospital.  On foot of my complaint, St. Luke’s Hospital Kilkenny furnished a ‘report’ (following their internal review) and the ‘report’ made no mention of failings in his care.  My family and I were not happy with this report.  We certainly did not agree with it and our instincts proved correct when my solicitors subsequently obtained an independent expert opinion on Patrick’s care at the hospital which confirmed that his treatment at St Luke’s Hospital Kilkenny was substandard and therefore his death, at only 47 years of age, was completely avoidable. 

As a result of the independent expert report on the role of St. Luke’s Hospital, I served High Court proceedings on behalf of my family against the hospital in respect of Patrick’s wrongful death.  Midway through the civil proceedings, St Luke’s Hospital admitted liability in respect of the substandard care afforded to my late brother. Today in Court they have acknowledged failings in my late brother’s care.    As a result of the above ordeal and given the unreserved apology of the hospital read out in open court today, it is our family’s hope that lessons will be learnt by the hospital regarding delays in treatment of gallstone pancreatitis in patients particularly given the fatal consequences that can occur.  We hope our story will spread awareness on this issue as we do not wish another family to go through the harrowing ordeal that we have suffered following the needless loss of our much loved brother.”

Media coverage of the case is here:-

Contact us at Cantillons Solicitors at +353 (0)21 4275673 or  if you would like more information.

In contentious business, a Solicitor may not calculate fees or other charges as a percentage or proportion of any award or settlement.  Many Personal Injury Solicitors portray themselves as “no win no fee Solicitors Cork”. This term can be misleading and it is essential that you discuss fees with the Personal Injury Solicitor you ultimately choose. At Cantillons Solicitors, we are entirely transparent.

Related Solicitors

Ernest J. Cantillon

Managing Partner

Marian Fogarty


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