~ When an admitted patient suffers an injury or death which is not anticipated to occur in the normal course of events, even in absence of medical negligence, the govt is obliged to disburse exgratia to the affected party.
• Background of the case:
~ The eight-year-old patient was suffering from tonsils and she had been admitted to Hospital 1, for treatment and was suggested surgery.
~ In order to prepare her for the operation, anesthesia was administered and unfortunately, she had developed some complications and she had been shifted to Hospital 2.
~ After being shifted to Hospital 2, she had gone into a coma, and eventually, she passed away.
• Complainant's allegation:
~ The complainant alleged that the death of the child was purely due to medical negligence on the part of the doctors.
• Doctor's Defense:
~ The counsels for the Government and private parties had opposed the allegation and submitted literature on the subject.
~ For the purpose of anesthesia, the child had been administrated a drug known as Propofol which can be administered to children above 3 years of age.
~ It had also been submitted that however there might be implications for children with mitochondria diseases.
~ There had been nothing on record to indicate that the child had the said disease and that it was omitted to be noticed by the doctors in question.
• The Commission held that:
~ The Court mentioned that the issue of medical negligence requires a factual determination.
~ There are always instances when a drug does not accord with the body of the patient and that leads to unfortunate complications.
~ Considering all the circumstances, the Court had finally ordered, that the petitioner deserves to be paid a sum of Rs.5.00 lakhs as compensation.
Madurai Bench Of Madras High Court