No Need of Dialysis: Consumer Court grants relief to hospital, its three doctors
Lucknow: Setting aside the order of District Forum, the State Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission of Uttar Pradesh has given relief to Bareilly-based hospital and its doctors including doctors including a physician, radiologist and pathologist while holding no deficiency in service on their part in tending to a patient.
The patient was admitted to the hospital with complaints of constant vomiting due to which she had suffered from dehydration. The father of the patient alleged that the hospital and doctors did not provide adequate treatment and put her on dialysis when needed.
The judgment by the State Commission bench of Sri Rajendra Singh, (Presiding Member) and Sri Sushil Kumar (Member) comes after the Managing Director of the treating hospital along with the treating doctors (physician, radiologist and pathologist) appealed before the Commission on the ground that the impugned judgment and order dated 01.02.2008 by the District Commission had been passed in an illegal and arbitrary manner, against the provision of law and therefore the judgment should be set aside in the interest of justice.
The Case goes back to the year 2006 when the complainant, around 5 pm in the evening that day, took his 13-year-old daughter to the Bareilly-based Hospital with complaints of vomiting. She was given treatment at the Hospital for two days and when the vomiting hadn't stopped the Hospital authorities advised her father to do an ultrasound and blood test.
Later, the tests were conducted and after examining the report, the doctor of the hospital allegedly said that the her liver had become 80% infected, the complainant alleged.
The complainant further stated before the commission that following this, the girl was taken to the emergency ward for five hours. He had been allegedly told by the Hospital authorities that as per report grave irregularities were found and the proportion of blood urea and creatinine should not be so much and on such count of blood urea the person should have gone into a coma.
The father of the patient further complained before the Commission that the Hospital authorities had intentionally and in order to recover more money from him had admitted the patient first in the general ward and then in the emergency ward, and again in the general ward. He further alleged that this had shown malafide intention on the part of the Hospital authorities.
Following this, a few days later, the treating doctor discharged the patient saying that the condition of the patient was critical. The complainant then took his daughter to another hospital in Rajendra Nagar, where another doctor treated the patient. The father of the patient alleged that the second doctor was shocked to see the reports of the patient. Claiming that the reports of the first hospital were wrong, he further advised the complainant to perform the blood examination again.
The complainant further mentioned before the Forum that the second doctor examined the patient in the OPD and prescribed some medicines after this. Gradually, the daughter of the complainant recovered. He further complained that when he showed the report of the second hospital to the treating doctor of the first hospital, he reprimanded him and turned him out.
Therefore the Complainant approached the Bareily District Forum for getting the relief in terms of money regarding the treatment of his daughter in the hospital.
The Hospital authorities along with the doctors denied all such allegations and denied informing the Complainant that his daughter's liver was 80% damaged. The hospital authorities claimed of informing the father of the patient that she would recover after proper treatment.
Following this, the District Forum had given several dates on which the Hospital authorities and their counsel had failed to be present. After hearing the argument, the District Forum had passed the judgment. Not being informed about the order by the district Forum, the Hospital authorities had approached the Court for perusing the file but the file could not be traced. They got the notice in the execution case and in response, they filed the appeal before the State Commission.
The ground for the appeal by the Hospital and doctors (including managing director, doctor, pathologist, and radiologist) had been that they were not given an opportunity for defense which was against the principle of natural justice and the appeal would be liable to be accepted. The hospital and doctors further claimed in their appeal before the State Commission that the District Forum did not evaluate the evidence properly and the findings of the deficiency by the Hospital were wrong.
Contending that the District Forum had erred in holding the correct meaning of the report, the Hospital party stated before the State Commission that as per the report of ultrasound and radiologist, both the kidneys had been normal in size and shape. The report further mentioned that the Pelvicalcycal system appeared compact which meant that there had been deposition of amal which had been causing obstruction in the purification of blood.
The counsel for the Hospital authorities further contended that the patient was vomiting which showed that the kidney hadn't been purifying the blood properly. He further argued that the patient had been treated as per the medical norms after receiving the report of pathology. Due to constant vomiting, the patient had suffered from dehydration and therefore she was shifted to the emergency ward. Just after the vomiting stopped she had again been transferred to the general ward. She became fit within two days and she was discharged on 14.08.2006.
The counsel for the hospital authorities further contended that as she had been fit there had been no deposition of amal when examined in the second hospital. Further stating that the allegation of extorting money had been baseless, the counsel for the Hospital authorities stated that the complainant had only spent Rs 4000 for the treatment of his daughter.
While directing the allegation of the complainant that on the basis of the pathology report she should have been put on dialysis the counsel for the hospital stated that Dialysis was a costly affair and as the complainant was a poor person. Thus, the patient hadn't been put on dialysis and she became fit by gradual treatment.
The Commission had taken note of the fact that in the first hospital the total bill of treatment is was Rs 4000 only. Meanwhile, the counsel for the complainant also mentioned before the Commission that the complainant's daughter was perfectly healthy at present and she had been discharged from the first hospital when she had become fit.
After taking note of all these facts, the Commission had opined
"Now it is hypothetical argument that she should have been put on dialysis. If it is so, why ***Hospital (second hospital) did not put her on dialysis? The simple reason is that she was perfectly okay and this is the reason that KK Hospital did not put her on dialysis. There is nothing on record to show the bench that she suffered any after treatment affect so it can't be imagined that she was not given proper treatment by *** Hospital (first hospital)."
The Commission had further noted,
"No hospital or doctor will do such negligence which will lower down his or his hospital's reputation. Everybody knows that there is rivalry amongst private nursing homes and every nursing home shows that he is the best."
Finding no deficiency on the part of the treating hospital, and no report that could show that the kidneys had been 80% damaged, the Commission observed,
"She was given treatment and admitted to the emergency ward for the treatment of dehydration and it is clear from the respondent's version that she was vomiting and vomiting may cause dehydration. There is nothing abnormal in the treatment."
Taking note of all this, the State Commission had set aside the judgment of the District Forum Bareilly and had stated that "there is no deficiency on the part of the hospital."
To view the original order by the Commission, click on the link below.