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Govt hospital to pay Rs 1.8 crore compensation to victim of medical negligence

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Wednesday ordered the Tamil Nadu government to pay a compensation of Rs 1.8 crore to the parents of a girl who lost vision within a year of birth due to medical negligence by doctors of a state government hospital at Egmore in Chennai.

Based on the report by a medical team from the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), New Delhi, the National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission (NCDRC) had granted a compensation of Rs 5 lakh in 2009 to the girl’s parents, which remained unpaid by the state government till date.

Allowing a plea by the girl’s father to enhance the damages, a bench of Justice J S Khehar and Justice S A Bobde awarded a compensation of Rs 1.38 crore and topped it with an additional amount of Rs 42.87 lakh to take care of the medical treatment that the 18-year-old girl would require.

The girl was born 10 weeks prematurely to V Krishnakumar and his wife Laxmi on August 30, 1996. She was placed in an incubator in the intensive care unit of the hospital for the next 25 days.

Even after her discharge, the hospital’s doctors kept visiting her but at no point in time they prescribed a test for the disease, Retinopathy of Prematurity (ROP), which is frequent in cases of premature births.

By the time private doctors could flag the problem, the disease had reached its terminal stage and the girl lost vision.

The Supreme Court bench found no justification for why the necessary tests were overlooked by the specialists and held them accountable for negligence. (Source: ToI, IE)

Read the full Judgement

2 Comments

  1. DeadDoc DeadDoc Monday, July 6, 2015

    We desperately need legally standardized forms of every major situation. All good hospitals use some sort of per-determined form that must be filled in to minimize chances of oversights of this nature.

  2. subhadra Jalali subhadra Jalali Monday, July 6, 2015

    The supreme court judgement awarding 1.8 Crore to a premature baby for ROp negligence again highlights care needed for Eyes of preterm babies. Please do get the preterm babies’ retina examined within 20-30 days of birth to avoid blindness and such litigations. Tees din Roshni Ke or Thirty days to Light is the message to be adopted by all preterm baby care givers. Preterm babies are not born blind but get ROP in few weeks of birth that can be cured in about 85-90% babies if detected on time by retinal screening. If baby misses the screening advised, do re-counsel parents and send baby immediately for retinal checkup to avoid a lifetime of INCURABLE and NEEDLESS Blindness.

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