A settlement has been reached in a case taken by Aoife Bennett, 26-year-old woman who developed the sleep disorder, narcolepsy, shortly after receiving the Pandemrix swine flu vaccine ten years ago.
It was seen as a test case for up to 100 more and the court had been asked to determine if any or all of the defendants, including the vaccine maker and the State, were liable for damages.
The defendants in the case were GlaxoSmithKline Biologicals, the Health Service Executive, the Minister for Health and the Health Products Regulatory Authority, formerly the Irish Medicines Board.
All claims made in the case were denied and the settlement was made without admission of liability.
No orders were made against the HPRA or GSK.
Statement said Tadgh Kennedy on behalf of SOUND (Sufferers Of Unique Narcolepsy Disorder):
“We thank Aoife and the Bennett family for taking the first landmark case,”
However, we are disappointed that the State saw fit to fight the case in court.
Approximately 100 other children and young adults must now await the outcome of their own legal cases, which the State insists must be taken on an individual basis.
The State should ensure that this is not a long drawn-out legal process, causing further hardship.
From the start, the State’s response to what transpired has been painfully slow, and this remains a difficult and protracted process for the families involved.
Sound wants the State to fulfil the duty of care it is morally bound to provide to children and young adults who now have to move through life with Narcolepsy.
“he cost to the State of this action alone can be measured in millions.”