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Delhi Doctor, Nurse fine Rs 5 lakh for Medical Negligence

Delhi Doctor, Nurse fine Rs 5 lakh for Medical Negligence

The case goes back to year 2009, when patient Sh. Lalan Prasad Sharma was examined in emergency ward of LBS Hospital, New Delhi and given two injections in his right hand. Complainant immediately thereafter  felt that his right hand had stopped working and was almost paralyzed. He was advised to go home. On the next day on his visit to the hospital, doctors put plaster on his right hand. Patient did not feel any relief. He went to Metro Hospital Delhi six days later. He was referred to G B Pant Hospital Delhi where he was told that due to the negligence on the part of the doctor his hand had stopped working.

The defence submitted by LBS hospital stated that that the complainant was suffering from right side radial nerve palsy along with wrist drop which was caused by chemical neuritis secondary to intramuscular injection. It was further submitted that the problem arose as a result of anatomical variation of course of radial nerve.

A medical board was also set up at GB Pant Hospital, which submitted the expert opinion as following

“Medical Board is of the opinion that the findings are suggestive of right radial nerve palsy. The same has been proved by Neuro-diagnostic tests done at A.I.I.M.S. (Neuroscience Centre) dated 26 May 2010, patient I.D.No. 800-10, available with the patient.”

After going through the complaint as well as the submissions, it is reported that a district forum in Delhi had held held medical negligence on the part of the doctor as well as the nurse, asking them to pay a compensation of Rs 5 lakh to the patient. However, challenging the said decision, the parties approached the State Forum namely on the grounds since LBS being a government hospital providing free services, there did not exist the relationship of ‘consumer’ and a ‘service provider’ necessary for the applicability of the Consumer protection act. The parties further submitted, quoting a previous Supreme Court Judgement that “a mere deviation from normal professional practice is not necessarily an evidence of negligence

The bench consisting of Shri NP Kaushik, however, rejected the plea of the doctor on both grounds stating

Giving injections in the nerve of the patient is not simply a deviation from a normal professional practice. Doctor or a nurse giving injections must be conscious of the area of the human body on which injection is being given. A medico must be thoroughly familiar with the anatomy of the human body.  Clearly, the law cited is not applicable to the case in hand.

Coming to the plea of non-existence of relationship of ‘consumer’ and ‘service provider’, the Hon’ble Supreme Court in the case of Indian Medical Association v. V P Shantha, 1995 (3) CPJ 1 (SC) held that the services rendered by the  Government hospital fall within the purview of the Consumer Protection Act 1986. This plea again does not help the appellant.

The State Forum, hence dismissing the plea of the doctor, upheld the decision of the district Forum awarding compensation to the tune of  Rs. 5,00,000/- to the complainant, recoverable from LBS Hospital . Further, LBS Hospital can recover the said amount from the salaries of the doctor and the nurse respectively for the paralysis caused to the patient.

Read the full judgement below :

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Source: self
4 comment(s) on Delhi Doctor, Nurse fine Rs 5 lakh for Medical Negligence

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  1. user
    Dr Anant Chary August 6, 2017, 7:15 pm

    No medical person would wantonly inject into a nerve. Even a Nurse is taught of the SAFE areas of the Human body to give an injection.
    But nothing is perfect in this world and such incidents of Cemical Neuritis do happen time & again inspite of all the precautions & NO body in this World can EVER stop such tragedies occurring in future.
    We can only offer our deepest sympathies to the aggrieved patient & offer him FREE treatment in the form of Nerve graft or Tendon Transfer.
    Only pray people in Authority who are passing judgments in such cases & deciding on fines, do take such facts into consideration.

  2. This is a tragedy and shame on part of indian judiciary, especially the consumer forum court. To hike their importance and usefulness, they have tendency to give the verdict always in favour of the victim irrespective of the logic and expert opinion. There are vested interests in part of the ppl out there. this must be curbed to avoid ample misuse of the CPA in future…. and Judges must be accountable for their judgement and must be brought under an act to restrict whimsical verdict.

  3. In case of train accident,bus accident,cable car accident,bridge collapse,from whose salary compensation are given and with which calculation,when several lives are engulfed.Radial nerve palsied hand can be made working after surgery,this is not a life threatening condition.There are some guidelines for compensation amount in case of loss of bodypart or deaths occuring at workplace,but in case of medical mishappening judge writes the amount whatever he wants.Shouldn\’t there be a ratio in amount of payment and compensation?

  4. Medicine is an uncertain and unpredictable department. All events cant be predictable and no human can be held accountable for someones fate as though doctors bring in bad fate willingly to patients. Try to make them realise human limitations and bring down overexpectations. Judges also make varying decisions, are they accountable for that?