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Challenge to symphysiotomy scheme
26 Nov 2014 21:09
Two elderly women who underwent symphysiotomy operations have brought a legal challenge to the Government redress scheme announced recently.
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The scheme was approved by the Government on 29 October and published on 10 November.
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It provides for payments of between €50,000 and €150,000 and is being assessed by retired judge Maureen Harding Clark.
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In a challenge to the constitutionality of the scheme, it is claimed the women, who are in their 80s, lack the necessary mental capacity to make applications for compensation under the Surgical Symphysiotomy Payment Scheme.
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It is claimed the scheme discriminates against the women and breaches their Constitutional rights because it does not provide for applications to be made on behalf of people without capacity and allows just 20 days to apply.
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One of the women also alleges the scheme breaches her rights under Section 3 of the European Convention on Human Rights Act.
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Mr Justice Donald Binchy granted leave to lawyers for the women to serve notice of the proceedings on the Government, Minister for Health and the Attorney General.
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The Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission is a notice party to both sets of proceedings, which return to court on Friday.
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