Fifty-six year old John was admitted to hospital for a secondary coronary artery by-pass operation as a private patient.
John had a history of asthma but the anaesthetist failed to examine him during a pre-operative assessment.
During the by-pass surgery, John suffered an asthma attack while under anaesthetic.
Initially, the anaesthetist didn't realise that John was having an asthma attack and when he did diagnose it, he administered a massive overdose of Salbutamol.
This caused John to suffer a heart attack and staff were unable to revive him.
It was alleged that John's death was caused by severe hypoxia as a result of the delay in diagnosing and treating the bronchospasm (asthma attack) and/or the administration of an excessive dose of Salbutamol.
At the time of his death, John was a director of Merrill Lynch Europe Limited and an Executive Director of Merrill Lynch International Bank Limited.
John's wife’s claim for financial dependency was substantial even on a limited life expectancy and the claim was settled for £475,000, plus costs. John's wife did not have to pay any legal fees and the case was taken on a no win, no fee basis.
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