A 25-year old woman who sued the National Maternity Hospital in Dublin over the circumstances of her birth has settled a High Court action for €8.25m.

Lawyers for Rachel Barry, who has spastic cerebral palsy and uses a wheelchair, told the High Court that her brain injury could have been avoided if there had been proper vigilance and care of her mother.

Today's settlement was made without admission of liability.

The court heard Finola Barry was admitted to Midlands Regional Hospital on 4 April 1997 when her pregnancy was at 30 weeks and two days.

She had a spontaneous rupture of the membranes and was transferred to the National Maternity Hospital, Holles Street, Dublin.

In the High Court action, it was claimed that because the membrane had ruptured it meant there was a risk of infection, but a decision was made not to deliver the baby until 14 April,1997.

Rachel Barry, of Clonbalt Woods in Co Longford, had through her mother Finola sued the National Maternity Hospital, claiming there was an alleged failure to diagnose her mother's infection after she was transferred to the hospital.

It was also alleged there was a failure to show appropriate vigilance for chorioamnionitis, a condition in pregnancy where the membrane around the foetus can get infected.

Counsel for Ms Barry, Des O’Neill SC, said it was their case that had there been proper vigilance of the mother at the time, it would have led to an earlier delivery, avoiding a brain injury.

Mr O'Neill pointed out that there was no protocol at the time for daily blood tests but this system has since changed at the hospital.

However, counsel said the Barry case must be judged on the 1997 standard.

The High Court heard Ms Barry hopes to get a third level qualification so she can help other people who are disabled.

Approving the settlement, Mr Justice Paul Coffey said it was fair and reasonable.

Outside court, solicitor Ciaran Tansey said the settlement was a big step for the family.

He said it would allow Rachel to live independently and do all the things others take for granted.

Her mother Finola said her daughter was relieved the case was over.