Healthcare Services



The William Fry Healthcare Services team works on a cross departmental basis, enabling us to provide specialist advices on a wide variety of issues to our diverse client base.  Our clients include healthcare providers, health insurers, pharmacies, professionals and government agencies.


We advise healthcare professionals, institutions and indemnifiers on all aspects of their work in the public and private sectors.  Our dedicated team of lawyers has vast experience in defending clinical negligence claims.

We specialise in advising healthcare clients, including representing doctors in respect of complaints to the Medical Council Fitness to Practice Inquiries.  We represent healthcare professionals at Coroner’s Inquests.

We are experienced in availing effectively of alternative dispute resolution mechanisms such as mediation and strive to ensure all dispute resolution issues for healthcare clients are dealt with professionally, promptly and confidentially. Reputation management is a key part of our expertise. Our lawyers bring years of media law experience to the healthcare sector, proactively dealing with reputational issues and engaging with the media for our clients when necessary. 

We understand the needs and requirements of healthcare professionals and institutions and the regulatory framework in which they operate.  Our broad client base includes world leaders in indemnifying medical, dental and veterinary claims.  We advise doctors, dentists, hospitals, nurses, veterinarians, pharmacies and government agencies. 

Our areas of expertise include:

  • Defending negligence claims against doctors, hospitals, dentists and veterinarians
  • Coroner’s Inquests
  • Medical and Dental Council complaints
  • Fitness to Practice Inquiries
  • Clinical Risk Management
  • Mental health, Capacity and Wardship
  • HSE Inquiries

Our experience includes advising:

  • BioMarin Pharmaceuticals Inc on its agreement to buy a bulk biologics manufacturing plant from Pfizer for US$48.5m
  • The Sodexo Group on the purchase of a majority interest in Zehnacker Ireland Holdings Limited which will trade as Sodexo Zehnecker Healthcare
  • Helix Health Group Limited on the €5m investment by the Diageo Ulster Bank Equity Fund Limited Partnership, and in relation to on-going commercial and intellectual property issues
  • BiancaMed on its sale to ResMed, and on an on-going basis,  in the commercial exploitation of its patents with strategic partners including negotiating agreements with Omron Healthcare, a Japanese leader in healthcare solutions, Dorel Inc., one of the leading providers of healthcare solutions in the United States and iRhythm a leading international player in the cardiac rhythm monitoring sector
  • University of Pittsburgh Medical Centre (UPMC) in relation to its investment in the Beacon Hospital which involved a complex corporate restructuring, liaising with Goodbody Stockbrokers to obtain the consent of tax investors to various aspects of the transaction, tax advices, renegotiation of the Group’s banking facilities, rebranding of the hospital and property and construction advices
  • UPMC in relation to its acquisition of a minority shareholding in various entities that have contracted with the HSE and the Board of Beaumont Hospital in relation to potential co-location hospitals at Cork, Limerick and Beaumont
  • UPMC in respect of its investment in and operation of the Whitfield Clinic in Waterford and its day to day operations at the Beacon Hospital
  • The State Claims Agency, the Health Insurance Authority and the National Paediatric Hospital Development Board
  • Barchester Healthcare on the recently opened Knightsbrook Village retirement community and primary care centre in Trim, County Meath, Stewarts Hospital and other private healthcare providers
  • International Investment and Underwriting (IIU) and Hibernian Health (formerly VIVAS)Management on the recent sale of their majority stake in the health insurer VIVAS to Hibernian Group
  • Pharmacies in the Irish pharmacy sector including Boots Retails (Ireland) Limited andUniphar plc, on protection of their trade mark portfolios and other matters

Life Science Innovation

We are pleased to be part of 'Life Science Innovation' launching online and in the Irish Independent today, discussing key trends shaping the industry.

IPHA's Revised Code of Practice for the Pharmaceutical Industry

Taking effect on 1 March 2021, the IPHA have revised their Code of Practice for the Pharmaceutical Industry

Launch of our Medical Device Publication

William Fry are delighted to launch our MDR/IVDR publication. To assist medical device companies navigate the new MDR & IVDR regulatory regime we have published under one roof the Regulations with easy access to the annexes and a table of equivalence comparing key articles from the MDD/AIMD & IVDD with the MDR & IVDR.

Data Protection Commission Publishes Report on Special Investigation in the Hospitals Sector

The Data Protection Commission (DPC) has published a special investigation report on data protection in the hospitals sector.

Medical Practitioners Now Required by law to Hold Indemnity Insurance

The Medical Practitioners (Amendment) Act 2017 introduces a mandatory legal requirement for medical practitioners to have in place a "minimum level" of indemnity cover.

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  • Sources laud the team's "strategic thinking" in complex cross-border disputes, going on to say: "The firm is very efficient and has a lot of depth of talent." Another client adds that "the lawyers find practical solutions to complex and sensitive legal problems." Chambers Europe 2020
  • One client describes the lawyers as "incredibly responsive" and "very easy to deal with" adding that they provide "succinct and well-delivered advice". Chambers Europe 2019
  • One client admires the "width and depth of expertise within the firm" and lauds the department as a "strong practice that understands the minutiae of the life sciences sector." Sources appreciate the "first-rate access and availability" of the team and describe its advice as "considered, pragmatic and clear." Chambers Europe, 2017

Laura Scott

  • Laura has been described as an "expert in all areas of IP." One client reports they have worked with Laura "on a number of cases in the last 12 months ranging from SPC validity proceedings to copyright. We are awaiting judgment in one case where I expected we would lose at the proofs stage but now believe that we will likely win because of the work put in by the team. On the IP side I would rate Fry as the leading firm in Ireland." Another client adds that Laura "stands out for her technical know-how and is an excellent drafter." Legal 500 2020
  • Laura has been ranked in IP Stars 2019 as one of the Top 250 Women in IPglobally.  
  • Laura Scott  is a highly respected IP practitioner with significant expertise in patent litigation. Sources praise her client-oriented approach, highlighting her "commitment and attention to detail" and adding that "she's a pleasure to deal with." Chambers Europe 2019
  • "Outstanding and a real pleasure to work with...Laura is a highly experienced litigator with intimate knowledge of all areas of intellectual property."  WTR1000 2019
  • “She is calm under pressure and has a depth of knowledge and experience which inspires confidence in her clients,” observes one source. Chambers Europe 2018
  • Laura is "on top of the technical detail...strategic and practical" and is praised for her "attention to detail and drafting skills". Legal 500 EMEA 2018 
  • Laura Scott receives plaudits for her trade mark and patent litigation practice, with particular knowledge of the pharmaceutical and life sciences sectors. Clients say: "She is very hard-working, responsive and dedicated to leaving no stone unturned in considering and communicating all available options. She is also extremely pleasant to work with." Chambers Europe 2017
  • Laura Scott has the ‘Midas touch with clients’. Legal 500 EMEA 2017

Fiona Barry

  • According to Chambers Europe 2020, clients appreciate that Fiona Barry is "very careful and thorough," while market commentators highlight her ability to "efficiently find her way to the core of the case." Another clients add that Fiona is "very timely and clear in her advice."
  • Sources say Fiona Barry is "knowledgeable, practical, clear, concise and not afraid to express an opinion." She is widely esteemed for her contentious experience, including acting on defamation suits. One source says: "She is excellent: confident, careful and easy to get on with."  Chambers Europe 2019
  • Fiona is particularly noted for her work on matters related to medical negligence and for acting for insurance companies on personal injury claims and is well regarded by market commentators for her media expertise. Chambers Europe 2018 
  • Fiona Barry is "straightforward and clear". Legal 500 EMEA 2018
  • According to Chambers Global 2017, Fiona holds a commanding position in the medical negligence and healthcare litigation sphere, including regulatory and insurance matters where clients praise her as being "responsive, knowledgeable and pleasant." 
  • Fiona Barry is ‘responsive, calm and considered’. Legal 500 EMEA 2016

Mark Quealy

  • Mark regularly acts for companies on cross-border disposals to private equity funds. Clients value Mark's knowledge and experience, with one source reporting: "He is very knowledgeable in terms of the market and gives good guidance." Chambers Global 2020
  • Mark progresses in the rankings, with one client describing him as "very proactive and pragmatic," and another saying that "he is very focused on commercial outcomes." He has particular experience of transactions involving private equity and venture capital elements. Chambers Europe 2019
  • Mark Quealy is "well-prepared." Legal 500 2018
  • Clients appreciate that he is "very quick to determine what to do from a practical point of view to get the deal over the line quickly." He has played a key role on numerous recent acquisitions. Chambers Global 2018

Charleen O'Keeffe

  • Charleen is ranked as a 'Rising Star' with Managing Intellectual Property IP Stars 2020.
  • Charleen is described as ‘an original thinker’. Legal 500 EMEA 2018

Key Contacts

Fiona Barry Partner

Margaret Muldowney Consultant

Barbara Kenny Partner

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