£30k payout for holiday heart attack

Philip Miller

Philip Miller - Credit: Archant

A 31-year-old man who suffered a suspected heart attack after contracting salmonella during a luxury holiday to Cuba for a family wedding has won a £30,000 compensation settlement.

Police officer Philip Miller, of Weston, visited Hotel Playa Pesquero for his sister’s wedding in 2013, but the two-week trip turned into a ‘nightmare’ when he fell ill.

Mr Miller developed abdominal pains, diarrhoea and severe lethargy within days of arriving in Cuba, and suffered throughout the trip. His illness also meant his ability to join the wedding celebrations was compromised.

Just one day after returning to the UK, he developed severe chest pains and was admitted to hospital with a suspected heart attack. There, medical experts diagnosed him as suffering from salmonella and myopericarditis (fluid on this heart).

Such was the severity of his symptoms and their effects, he was forced to take three months off work to fully recover.

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Now, specialist illness lawyers Irwin Mitchell have helped him secure a £30,000 setttlement from holiday firm TUI UK, although the company did not admit liability.

Mr Miller said: “This was meant to be a special holiday for the whole family, but the symptoms I suffered meant that I simply could not enjoy it at all.

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“I was devastated and angry that I wasn’t able to focus on my sister’s big day and instead had to spend time battling my illness. However, at that point I had no idea that the problems would get so much worse.

“I still find it hard to believe that an illness I suffered on holiday went on to start a chain of health problems which dominated my life for months.

“You just simply never expect to fall ill during a break abroad and you certainly don’t think that such issues would go on to affect you in such a way.

“Looking back on the problems, it is still so frustrating that I went through this nightmare. Now the case has settled, I’m just hoping to move on with my life and look positively to the future.”

This is not the first time legal experts have been instructed by holidaymakers regarding the resort, as Irwin Mitchell is pursuing financial awards for others affected by illness problems there.

That includes others who have suffered with salmonella during their stays at the resort in 2012 and 2013, plus a group of 24 holidaymakers who stayed at the resort in the summer of 2014.

Jatinder Paul, the specialist international personal injury lawyer who represented Mr Miller, said: “This case is a shocking reminder of the huge consequences that illnesses such as salmonella can have on victims, with a healthy 30-year-old developing serious health problems after falling ill on what was meant to be a special family holiday.

“The issues that Philip endured had a major impact on his life and as a result we are delighted to have helped him secure a settlement which will go some way towards compensating him for the impact this illness has had on his life.

“We are now focused on helping others affected by problems at the same resort to get the justice that they deserve.”

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