Human touch is Code of Conduct for Hospitals: Delhi Consumer forum directing Apollo to pay Rs 10 Lakh compensation
New Delhi: Human touch is "necessary" and the "duty" of hospitals, the Delhi State Consumer Commission has said while directing Apollo Hospital to pay Rs 10 lakh compensation to the father of a 24-year old woman who died because of its negligence in 2007. The commission said that hospitals are "required to implement" this human touch in their day-to-day functioning.
It made the observation while directing the Inderprastha Apollo Hospitals to pay the compensation to Delhi resident, Raj Karan Singh, for the suffering, mental pain and agony caused by the hospital's negligence.
The commission said the compensation may bring about a "qualitative change" in the attitude of hospitals for providing service to "humans as humans".
"This may serve the purpose of bringing about a qualitative change in the attitude of the hospitals for providing service to the human beings as human beings. Human touch is necessary; that is their code of conduct; that is their duty and that is what is required to be implemented," said the commission's member Anil Shrivastav in a recent order.
According to the complaint filed by Singh, his daughter was undergoing dialysis in the hospital in 2005 and due to use of an unhygienic dilator, her health deteriorated leading to coma.
It said that after slipping into coma, Singh's daughter was in the ICU for 47 days and even there she underwent repeated negligence and recklessness of the hospital staff and doctors, finally leading to her death in 2007.
Singh being unsatisfied of the compensation of Rs 1 lakh granted by the district forum in 2012, had challenged it in the state commission.
The commission, which called the district forum's compensation as "too meagre", modified the award amount keeping in mind the age of the victim and the mental pain and agony suffered by her family.
"The patient was a 24 year old female child. Her end was owing to the negligence of the respondent hospital (Apollo). She had before her entire life and career.
"Further the complainant (Singh) and his family were subjected to mental agony due to the departure of the patient. These factors would clearly show that the compensation awarded is too meagre for the suffering caused to the complainant," the commission said.