Case Law: 23rd June, 2018

23 June, 2018


On the night of 12.08.2002, the patient named Devinder Kaur was admitted to the said hospital when she felt pain in her abdominal region and was shifted to ICU till 16.08.2002. As she was the CGHS patient, the Hospital Authorities asked the Complainant not to worry about the expenses.

However on 21.08.2002, due to her condition, she was again shifted to ICU and was kept on ventilator. Later, on 27.08.2002, she was shifted to Ward and a Tracheotomy was conducted but the patient started showing symptoms of madness. The Complainant’s main grievance is that in the morning of 29.08.2002 when the patient was having tea and biscuits, she was offered a tablet and after taking that tablet, she was shifted to ICU in the state of cardiac arrest. She was not passing Urine andit was later found that the catheter was not properly adjusted. The total Hospital Bill charged was about Rs.1,32,720/-. Thereafter, she was shifted to Apollo Hospital, wherein on 14.12.2002 she took her last breath.

Later, the husband of the deceased patient filed a case for medical negligence against the Hospital and the Doctors claiming compensation of Rs.20 lakhs.

The Doctors vehemently defended their case and denied all the allegations and stated that the patient was the case of long-standing diabetes mellitus with neuropathy, hypertension and stress fracture of D 11-L 1. She was referred and treated by to Physicians, Surgeons, Gastroenterologist, Neurosurgeons and Chest physicians as and when required. The Cardiorespiratory arrests were the result of poorly treated diabetes mellitus and obesity and its related complications. It was also submitted the medical record and discharge summary of Apollo Hospital were not filed.

The State Commission referred the matter to the expert committee and the Committee in its report clearly opined that the treatment given to the deceased was proper and there was no negligence on part of doctors. This report was relied upon by the Commission and moreover, this report was not challenged by the Complainant.

The Commission observed that the Complainant made allegations without proofs. There was no iota of evidence to prove the allegations that wrong medicine was administered or there was maladjustment of catheter and Complainant has made a bald allegation that a minor difficulty of pain in the left abdominal region led to the loss of life.
It was also observed that almost 6 Doctors from different specialties treated her and she was recovering well, however, later she developed anoxia and encephalopathy in third cardio-respiratory arrest. Moreover, there was no record of any medical treatment for the period of 105 days after her discharge from Opponent Hospital.

The Commission dismissed the case holding that the loss of companionship to the Complainant is unquantifiable in terms of money, however, the law does not act on emotions, but on proofs as in the instant case, almost all the Specialists were involved and they were trying to save the life of the Deceased.
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