This site is intended for Healthcare professionals only.
×

London High Court upholds Medical Tribunal decision to bar Indian Oncologist from Practicing in UK


London High Court upholds Medical Tribunal decision to bar Indian Oncologist from Practicing in UK

Mumbai: The High Court in London dismissed the appeal filed by an Indian Oncologist to set aside the Medical Practitioners Tribunal Service (MPTS) which barred him from practicing in the United Kingdon

Medical Dialogues team had earlier reported that the tribunal had barred the oncologist Dr Pantula Sastry from practicing in the United Kingdom after he was found guilty for a patient’s death at Kokilaben Dhirubhai Ambani Hospital in 2014.

A medical practitioners’ tribunal concluded that the doctor had knowingly given high dose BEAM chemotherapy followed by autologous stem cell transplantation to a patient with lymphoma whose test results suggested she would not survive it when he was working at Mumbai-based Hospital, according to judgment quoted in the British Medical Journal (BMJ).

The concerned case is of a patient, Sushma Agarwal, 55, who was admitted to Kokilaben Dhirubhai Ambani Hospital (KDAH) for treatment of a condition known as Non-Hodgkins lymphoma. Dr Sastry had performed an autologous bone marrow transplant on the patient.

Even after the treatment, the patient’s condition didn’t improve. When the son approached a doctor at a different hospital and there he was told that his mother’s CD34 counts had been inadequate for the transplant. However, the patient died 23 days after the transplant.

Disappointed with the treatment, the patient’s son alleged that the doctor performed the transplant with the knowledge that the CD34 count was inadequate and subsequently registered a case of medical negligence with the Maharashtra Medical Council (MMC). But no hearing arrived in this regard.

Next year in 2015, when the son somehow came to know that the doctor had relocated to the UK, and was practicing there, he reported his mother’s case to the UK’s General Medical Council (GMC), which  allowed under the Medical Act 1983 to consider events overseas that might affect the fitness to practice of doctors working in the UK.

After conducting an investigation, GMC initiated proceedings against the doctor in the UK Medical Tribunal to ascertain if the doctor is responsible for the patient’s death or not.

In its final hearing on August 1, 2018 the tribunal found that in the patient’s case, Dr Sastry had gone ahead with chemotherapy and transplant ‘in full knowledge of the inadequate number’ of CD34. Moreover, the tribunal found that he was incompetent to conduct as the procedure was ‘outside his area of expertise.’

During the hearing, Dr Sastry argued that he had been given two different CD34 numbers by the laboratory, so had reverted to an older method of estimating stem cells. But the written laboratory report, the doctor’s contemporary case report, and the death report he wrote a few weeks later all gave the same, lower figure for CD34 cells. He told the tribunal that he had been pressured into writing these figures by hospital management, but this claim was not accepted.

Dr Sastry contended, “At the time, he had received two different counts of CD34 from the laboratory. The laboratory telephoned him and told him the count was 0.5% (adequate), as opposed to what was then mentioned in the report – 0.05% (inadequate).”

However, the tribunal found his claims to be unsubstantiated and further barred him from practicing in UK.

Read Also: For Alleged Medical Negligence in India, Indian oncologist barred from practising in UK

He then moved to the High Court in London and drafted an appeal to dismiss the decision taken by the tribunal.

The high court heard his application on January 20, 2019, and in a decision on February 25, the court dismissed the appeal, ruling that the doctor is not fit to practice, on account of causing the death of a patient, reports Mumbai mirror.


Source: with inputs
4 comment(s) on London High Court upholds Medical Tribunal decision to bar Indian Oncologist from Practicing in UK

Share your Opinion Disclaimer

Sort by: Newest | Oldest | Most Voted
  1. Would the patient have survived if she had been left alone? No.
    Soon doctors will stop performing CPR as they may be accused of causing the death of the patient by trying to save it!
    It is a lesson on the times we live in today. Doctors are being taught to put their own safety before the attempt to save their patients. This is the death knell for the medical profession and the establishment of medicine as a business.

  2. Am a doctor myself….and greatly appreciate and welcome the decision taken by the London court….if there was a discrepancy in CD counts…simplest way is to repeat them in two diff labs…sometimes an ego plays a greater part which jeopadises patient\’s life….and if he returns to Kokilaben hospital can recourse to PIL.

  3. user
    Dr RAMESHVARDHAN March 6, 2019, 6:49 pm

    HE IS BARRED FROM PRACTICING IN U K . HE MAY PACK UP HIS BAG AND BAGGAGE TO LAND UP IN KOKILA BEHAN , LELAVATHI, JESLOK, NANAVATI OR ANY OTHER HOSPITAL IN BOMBAY THE MUMBAI .OR HALF WAY HE MAY GET DOWN IN ONE OF THE OIL RICH GULF COUNTRIES TO SET UP HIS PRATICE. OR HE MAY BRIBE , GET INTO ONE OF GOVERNMENT MEDICAL COLLEGES ACROSS THE COUNTRY , OR INTO PRIVATE PRACTICE FOR LIVING . IF NOTHING WORKS ,HE CAN JOIN AAM ADMI KA PALTY …… BEFORE THAT HE MAY HAVE TO TO PICK FEW TRICKS WITH CHANGE\’ IN GETUP FROM TIE TO MUFFLER WITH SPECIAL STYLE COUGHING ……. *cough* *cough*😷😷😷

  4. Very unfortunate. I am reminded of the Biblical account wherein Lord jesus asked the gathering to throw stones on a prostitute if anyone has NEVER SINNED. I would like to ask the JUDICIARY if there is any doctor/physician who has NEVER certified death of his patient. Non Hodgkin\’s Lymphoma is a condition where the mortality can be high – my own mother went downhill in a matter of 7 months and I lost her despite best treatment. I would request the judiciary to give te benefit of doubt to the treating physicians/surgeons in cases of CANCER, Multi organ failures, Severe degenerative conditions with a word of restrined caution to the medical community NOT TO SHOW DARE DEVILRY in hopeless cases just for the sake of monetary considerations. At times wisdom lies in leaving the outcome to natural forces and Divinity. NOT TO ACT GOD. The other pathies like homeo/unani/ayurveda practitioners have an almost envious protection from legal issues only because they never act like gods/give NO guarantees whatsoever!!