Cancer hospital fined Rs.500,000 for medical negligence

June 20th, 2008 - 8:49 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, June 20 (IANS) A well known cancer hospital here was fined Rs.500,000 Friday by the Delhi Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission for medical negligence in conducting a surgery without any test and investigation on a retired army officer’s wife. The commission held the Rajiv Gandhi Cancer Institute guilty of medical negligence in conducting a radical hysterectomy operation for cervical cancer without any test and investigation and directed the institute to pay Rs.500,000 to Lt. Col. (retd) Zile Singh Dahiya, husband of deceased Krishna Kumari.

The hospital’s plea was that unless some positive report had come from the investigation, the patient could not have been given further treatment. But there was no local recurrence and chemotherapy was not given to the patient, the hospital claimed.

“After having radiotherapy treatment, the deceased was totally cured. But for second opinion, she approached the hospital. The hospital without taking any investigation of cancer, except Computed Tomography (CT) scan, conducted cancer operation without any test and investigation, which was not at all required as per CT scan report and the another medical report, which showed negative for malignancy,” Justice J.D. Kapoor, president of the commission, ruled.

Kapoor stated that hospital even did not carry out the operation properly, which caused the spread of the cancer.

Krishna Kumari suffered from cancer of cervix and she was treated with radiation therapy at Post Graduate Institute of Medical Sciences (PGIMS), Rohtak from Aug 16, 1999 to Sept 9, 1999.

On Oct 18, 1999, the complainant was advised to consult K.K. Pandey at the Rajiv Gandhi Cancer Institute. After examining the patient, he advised immediate operation. The patient was admitted in the hospital Oct 22, 1999 for the surgery on next day.

After the operation, the patient was discharged Oct 28, 1999.

However, in August 2000, the Krishna Kumari developed symptoms indicating that cancer was resurfacing and in September, 2000 ultrasound and CT scan were carried out at the hospital which confirmed the spread of the disease to the other parts of the body.

However, Pandey allegedly refused to acknowledge the presence of malignancy and to give treatment for the same.

On Dahiya’s request, Fine Needle Aspiration Cytology (FNAC) test was conducted Oct 16, 2000 and bone scan Oct 30,2000 was carried out at the hospital.

These tests showed presence of malignancy, but were allegedly rejected by Pandey. When the same slides of FNAC were shown at Indraprastha Apollo Hospital, New Delhi, presence of cancer was confirmed.

According to Dahiya, three month’s valuable time was lost due to persistent refusal of Pandey to accept the presence of the malignancy and to give the cancer treatment to his wife.

During these three months, there was extensive spread of cancer in the body of Krishna Kumari. She reached the stage of no cure, which was confirmed by the spinal CT scan Dec 14, 2000. She died Feb 6, 2001.

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