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Shine secures record pay out for meningitis victim Nancy Mules


The fight for justice by Shine’s medical law team on behalf Brisbane meningitis victim, Nancy ‘Lee’ Mules, has concluded successfully with Ms Mules being awarded the highest damages for an injury in Queensland history.

Nancy Mules' case

Ms Mules was left permanently blind and deaf after her GP failed to refer her to a specialist. The 43-year-old Cairns woman first visited her doctor in June 2008 complaining of rushes of blood and dizziness in her head. The GP suggested that this was due to the onset of menopause.

When Ms Mules returned three months later with neck pain and headaches, she was sent home with medication and bed rest. However, within a week, Ms Mules was admitted to hospital and diagnosed with cryptococcal meningitis.

medical negligence

Unfortunately, due to late diagnosis, Ms Mules eyesight and hearing could not be saved.

The legal battle

In 2013, Shine Lawyers lodged a claim for Ms Mules against GP Kaylene Joy Ferguson for negligence. However, the Queensland Supreme Court dismissed the case.

In February 2015, Shine Lawyers on behalf of Ms Mules, appealed the Supreme Court decision and were successful. Ms Mules was awarded $6.7 million, the largest award for damages in a personal injury case in Queensland.

In October this year, Dr Ferguson applied for special leave to appeal the award. The High Court refused the application.

“The High Court's refusal to grant special leave to appeal to Dr Ferguson means the end of the road for the defendant in fighting Lee's claim,” said Shine Lawyers Special Counsel Bill King.

“The compensation Nancy received means she will now be able to obtain the necessary care and support, accommodation and medical treatment to manage living with these profound disabilities for the rest of her life.”

Written by Shine Lawyers on February 7, 2016. Last modified: September 26, 2018.

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