Advocate Sushila
SUPREME COURT REITERATES FACTORS TO BE CONSIDERED IN CASES OF MEDICAL NEGLIGENCE
Advocate Sushila Ram 11 Sep 2021

SUPREME COURT REITERATES FACTORS TO BE CONSIDERED IN CASES OF MEDICAL NEGLIGENCE

The Two-Judge Bench of the Supreme Court has in a recent case of Dr. Harish Kumar Khurana vs Joginder Singh & Ors. passed a Judgment dated 07-09-2021, wherein, the Apex Court reiterated the factors to be considered in medical negligence cases.

In this case, Mrs. Jasbeer Kaur (Patient) was diagnosed with kidney stone in her right kidney at the Appellant Hospital on 08-10-1996. Dr. Rajeev Kumar Majumdar advised the Patient to undergo surgery. She came back to the Hospital again on 03-12-1996, when she was diagnosed with kidney stone in her left kidney as well and was further informed that the right kidney was severely damaged. So, the Patient was again advised to undergo surgery. The Patient then got admitted in the Hospital on 06-12-1996. Dr. Harish Kumar Khurana informed the Patient and her family members that surgery would be done on the kidneys one at a time due to severity of damage. Hence, left kidney would be operated first, as the chances of complete removal of right kidney were high. The Hospital obtained an informed consent for a ‘high risk surgery’ from the Patient and her husband on 09-12-1996. Dr. Harish Kumar Khurana and Dr. Rajeev Kumar Majumdar successfully operated on the left kidney, after which the Patient’s condition improved by 12-12-1996, as per the Hospital Authorities. Hence, the surgery for right kidney was scheduled for 16-12-1996. However, as soon as the Patient was taken inside the Operation Theatre and was administered certain injections, her condition deteriorated and she went into cardiac respiratory arrest. As per the Hospital Authorities, she was later put on automatic ventilator support and shifted to critical care unit, but the Patient passed away on 23-12-1996.

 

Thereafter, the Appellant-Hospital raised issues regarding payment of balance medical bills and later, filed a Suit for Recovery on 13-08-1997 against the Patient’s husband. But the Patient’s husband led a demonstration at the Hospital along with his co-workers on 06-02-1997 and filed a criminal complaint against the Appellant Hospital on 27-09-1997. 

 

Thereafter, the Patient’s husband and children filed a Complaint / Petition before the National Consumer Dispute Redressal Commission (NCDRC) against the Appellant Hospital Authorities on 06-12-1997 in the matter of OP/289/1997 Joginder Singh & Ors. vs Dr. Rajeev Kumar Majumdar and Others, thereby, alleging medical negligence and claiming compensation. The Complainants alleged that the Hospital Doctors were liable for medical negligence as they did not pay heed to her poor tolerance to anaesthesia. Moreover, based on the Doctrine of Res Ipsa Loquitor, which states that a court can infer negligence from the very nature of the accident or injury, in case there is no direct evidence to show how the defendant behaved, the Doctors may be held liable for medical negligence.


To read more, please visit the link below:


https://theindianlawyer.in/supreme-court-reiterates-factors-to-be-considered-in-cases-of-medical-negligence/


#supremecourt #factors #medicalnegligence #lawyered

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