Farrell v Avon Health Authority; 8 Mar 2001

References: [2001] All ER (D) 17
Coram: Judge Bursell QC
The claimant was father to a new-born child. At the birth he was told that his baby son was dead before seeing his son and understanding that an error had been made. He sought damages asserting that he had suffered nervous shock. The Hospital said that he was not able to recover for psychiatric injury where no possibility of a physical injury was forseeable.
Held: He succeeded. As a primary victim a claim for psychiatric injury was possible even where no physical injury was risked. A real risk of suffering a recognised psychiatric disorder was sufficient.