A WOMAN who has locked-in syndrome is now on a new vital signs monitor following the success of a fundraising campaign.
Catherine O’Leary, 43, has been cared for by her devoted parents Pat and Margaret at their home in Carrigaline, Cork for the past six years.
The family created a GoFundMe page at the beginning of the year to help fund for the new vital signs monitor for Catherine.
The old one needed to be replaced as the model had become obsolete and was beginning to damage her fingers.
And thanks to the generosity of the public and UFC fighter Conor McGregor, who donated €5,000, they reached their target. The monitor arrived last week.
Posting on a Facebook page for Catherine, her brother Patrick said: “Catherine’s new Vital Signs monitor has arrived!
‘EXTEND OUR THANKS’
“I wanted to extend our thanks and appreciation to everyone who donated, and especially to Conor McGregor – our target was quickly surpassed when the MMA star donated €5000.”
Any additional funds raised as part of the campaign are to be used to calibrate Catherine’s monitor every year and go directly towards her ongoing care.
Catherine, a mum-of-one, was left paralysed but conscious in January 2008 after suffering a series of strokes during an operation at Cork University Hospital to remove a brain tumour.
Nine months later she stopped breathing while being treated in London, and was left with permanent brain damage.
‘SHE IS A FIGHTER’
Her family have previously raised concerns for the cost of her future healthcare, with huge monthly costs.
In November 2013, the HSE agreed to pay out €2.5million to cover the cost of her past and future care, and to compensate for past suffering.
The doctors’ grim prognosis that the mum-of-one would not live beyond ten years later formed the basis of a damages settlement.
But the award — which effectively predicted Catherine would die before 2017 — didn’t take into account her battling spirit, which she continues to show to this day.
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Speaking previously, dad Pat said: “We felt a €2.5million settlement based on the four years doctors expected Catherine to live was outrageous.
“We know our daughter better than anyone and we know she is a fighter.
“How can anyone say someone is going to die within a certain length of time?”