Consequences of a consultant's failure to peruse the referral letter
Key Learnings of the Case
1. Consultants must attentively peruse the referral letter of the referring doctor
2. Consultants must insist that the patient produces the referral letter given by the referring doctor/hospital and the same must be kept by the consultant
3. Wrong reports issued by pathology laboratories and diagnostic centers are negligence per se
4. Courts are increasingly drawing adverse inference against patients who are rushing to courts without actually verifying whether any negligence has been committed or not
Facts of the case
The patient was admitted to the hospital for blood transfusion. The laboratory of the hospital wrongly reported the patient's blood group as B-negative, although it was B-positive. 20 units of B-negative blood were transfused in the hospital and the patient was discharged on the third day. Later on the patient was again admitted to the hospital and later shifted to two other hospitals, and discharged after two weeks.
Patient's allegation/s of medical negligence
- It was alleged that the hospital gave a wrong report about the blood group and blood of this wrong group was transfused to the patient leading to complications.
- It was further pointed out that the referral letter of the doctor who had referred the patient to the hospital had clearly recorded the blood group as B-positive, but the same was conveniently ignored....
Know more about the doctor's defense, the Court's Ruling and the suggested precautions here - http://mlcd.in/article.asp?issn=0974-1232;year=2013;volume=6;issue=1;spage=5;epage=6;aulast=