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Apollo Hospital, doctor directed to pay Rs 4 lakh to deceased patient’s family for medical negligence

New Delhi: The National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission (NCDRC) has directed Apollo Hospitals Hyderabad and one of its doctors, Dr J M Gurunath, to pay Rs 4 lakh as compensation to Telangana resident K S Sastry whose wife died on November 24, 2000 due to alleged medical negligence.

While dismissing an appeal filed by the hospital against the state commission’s order, the NCDRC noted that the hospital authorities failed to take the consent of the patient and her family before a surgery, which was a high risk procedure, that deteriorated her health, resulting in her death.

“We are of the considered view that it was a case of medical negligence due to failure of duty of care. It was not a reasonable practice. Therefore, we do not find any error in the well reasoned order of the state commission,” said the NCDRC bench of Ajit Bharihoke (Presiding Member) and Dr S M Kantikar (Member) in an order dated February 23, 2017.

According to the complaint filed by Sastry, his wife K Padmavati was suffering from upper abdominal pain and consulted Dr Gurunath at the Apollo Hospital on October 10, 2000. Dr Gurunath allegedly prescribed antibiotics without any pre-operative tests.

The complainant alleged that in spite of repeated requests made to Dr Gurunath that the patient was already suffering from a lung disease and was under treatment with steroids, Dr Gurunath performed for ERCP (Endoscopic Retrograde Cholangiopancreatography), without taking her or her husband’s consent and without conducting necessary tests, in a negligent manner.

Read the full judgement

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