New Delhi: Holding medical negligence on the part of the hospital, that led to the death of a female patient, a Delhi Consumer Forum has asked Batra Hospital and Medical Centre in Tughlakabad to pay a compensation of Rs 8 lakh along with Rs 25,000 as litigation cost to the family of the deceased.
The case is that of a female cancer patient ( carcinoma breast), who had been under the care of the hospital, where she was operated in 1994 for the said disease. Since then she had been under regular check up and follow-up under Dr. D. Gosh at the hospital. In 2008, she came to the hospital with complaints of bronchitis and was advised a series of tests including contrast CT and mammography.
For the media contrast CT, one injection was administered to her by a nurse and after 15 minutes she came out of the room. As she came out of the room she fell down on the floor and the suds (jhag) were coming out of her mouth and nose. The complainant alleged that Nether any doctor nor any nurse nor any other official of the hospital had come to her at that time, her condition started deteriorating soon leading to her death.The complainant further added that contrast media is never given to a patient unless a doctor is present and patients are usually screened before being given contrast by means of series of questions and these “typically” include an allergy history and a history of any asthma and diabetes; that reactions can range from minor to severe, in the worst case scenario, resulting in death, which happened in this case.
The hospital in its defence stated that while providing the medical treatment to the patient including doing the
media contrast scan all standard surgical and medical principles in treating her had been observed
and she had been given best available treatment and, hence, it is not a case of medical negligence. It stated that CT was done by technicians under supervision of doctors and she was given prompt resuscitation after the incident, post which she was shifted to the ICU where unfortunately she died
The court observed that while stating that CT was done under the supervision of doctors, the hospital did not disclose names of the medical doctors under whose supervision the said test had been conducted/administered. The court made an observation that the hospital records did no match with the story implying that the hospital manipulated the records to tamper with the time of death
It is not palatable to our mind that Smt. Nirmal Sharma had died twice once at 4.45 p.m. and again at 6 p.m. It shows that the OP No.1 & 2 infact tried to manipulate their medical records to suit their requirement but they could not do so and the documents filed by them have exposed their falsehood
The court also went through the report of the Delhi Medical Council, that absolved the hospital of medical negligence charges but observed variance in the record keeping.
The time and version of events related to C.T. chest on 26 March, 2008 as the narrated in the complaint, the written statement of the doctors of the said hospital and copy of medical records of the said hospital are at variance which could be due to minor difference in the time settings of the C.T. Machine. The record keeping ofthe said Hospital left much to be desired. The consent form for C.T. Scan did not bear the signatures either of the patient or her attendant and also does not specify the likely complication associated with the procedure.
Observing that Delhi Medical Council took a wrong decision in view of the observation above, and that the hospital was guilty of negligence, the forum allowed the complaint and direct the insurance company and the hospital jointly and severally to pay Rs.8,00,000/- (Rupees eight lacs only) in lumpsum to the complainants towards compensation for loss of consortium to complainant No.1 and love and affection to remaining complainants, Rs.25,000/- towards cost of litigation within a period of 30 days of the date of receipt of copy of this order failing which they shall become jointly and severally liable to pay interest @ Rs.6 % per annum on the above-said amount of Rs.8 lacs from the date of this order till realization
Attached is the judgement below