~ Due care and caution is expected from a medical practitioner while giving treatment as per the established medical jurisprudence avoiding delay.
• Background of the case:
~ The patient met with an accident and approached the emergency ward of the Hospital 1 where the hospital denied treating him due to the lack of a specialist doctor.
~ He was referred to Hospital 2, where the doctor informed about the requirement of amputation in both the legs by one or one and a half inches for artificial limbs.
~ The doctors belonging to the Hospital 2 proved negligent by not giving treatment in time which resulted in the amputation of the legs by more length than it was assured earlier.
• Complainant's allegation:
~ The complainant alleged that although the necessary two units of blood had been arranged by the patient's family; the treatment only started on the next day.
~ The doctor had amputated the complainant's left leg with around 8 inches and right leg by 11 inches below the knee joint which was totally contrary to what was informed earlier.
~ He was discharged from Hospital 2 even though he had been suffering from a high fever post-operation.
~ An x-ray report read that the fibula was longer than the tibia of the left leg for which he had to undergo another surgery, which caused financial hardship apart from mental agony.
• Doctor's Defense:
~ The counsel appearing for the treating hospitals contended that the complaint had been hopelessly time-barred.
~ The second hospital had delayed the operation by one day as the blood sugar level of the patient had been really high.
~ The treating hospitals had denied all the allegations and mentioned that the length of the amputation, as mentioned by the complaint had been completely false.
• The Commission held that:
~ The Commission noted that timely detection and treatment could have helped the patient and the family.
~ The treating hospitals had been insensitive to the complainant and it had been certified by another hospital where the Complainant had visited for further treatment.
~ The complainant was awarded compensation of Rs. 10 Lakhs with 3.5% interest from the date when the cause of action arose and negligence was admittedly done till the realization of the amount.
In The State Commission: Delhi