Case Law: 17th Feb, 2019

17 February, 2019

 
C. THILAKANANDAN AND ORS. Vs. NATURE LIFE HOSPITAL AND ORS.
 ORDER DATED: 27.11.2017

The Consumer Disputes Redressal Forum at Kozhikode has slapped a fine of Rs. 4 lakh on nature cure activist and anti-vaccine propagator Mr. Jacob Vadakkanchery and Mr. Joshi M. Varghese, for the death of a patient.

FACTS:
The patient named Mr. Vinayanandan, a lawyer from Kozhikode was suffering from diabetes, peptic ulcer and kidney stone. He was admitted to the Nature Life Hospital and Remedies in Kochi, which is collectively run by Mr. Vadakkanchery and Mr. Varghese. Within five days of receiving treatment, Mr. Vinayanandan suffered fatigue, collapsed and subsequently died at the hospital.

His family members approached the Consumer Forum alleging that the Petitioner’s insistence on practicing yoga that day in the morning led to Mr. Vinayanandan’s death as the deceased was also a heart patient.
 
DEFENSE BY THE RESPONDENTS:
The Respondents claimed that the deceased had neither disclosed his heart ailment in the admission form nor shared his ECG.
 
COURT HELD:
  • The Forum, however, noted that the two owners of the hospital admitted to not understanding ECG.
  • The Forum President Rose Jose opined that this means that the production or non-production of ECG before them is immaterial in this case, which also shows their gross ignorance in the medical field. It was further observed that whatever branch of medicine a doctor is practicing, he should know the fundamentals of medical science otherwise they are not deserved to be called a doctor.
  • Thus from the evidence it is found that in the instance case the Opposite Parties No. 3 and 4 did not show the reasonable skill or care in treating the patient where they are bound to show, which amounts to gross negligence and deficiency in service on the part of Opposite Parties No. 3 and 4.
  • The Forum held that though it is found that the direct cause of death of the patient was not because of the treatment of the opposite parties, it is found that there is gross negligence on the part of the opposite parties in giving care and attention to the patient. Hence, the petition is partly allowed and the opposite parties are found liable to compensate the petitioners reasonably.
  • The Respondents were, therefore, directed to pay Rs. 4 lakhs, jointly and severely, to the deceased. Out of the proceeds, Rs. 2 lakhs was directed to be paid to the daughter of the deceased and Rs. 1 lakh each to his mother and wife.
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