HC dis­misses neg­li­gence plea against doc­tor

Hindustan Times (Delhi) - - METRO - Press Trust of In­dia htre­[email protected]­dus­tan­times.com

It is clear from that nei­ther any sep­a­rate le­gal opin­ion was sought by the ex­ec­u­tive com­mit­tee nor was any such le­gal opin­ion ten­dered. How­ever, an ex­pert was in­cluded as a part of the ex­ec­u­tive com­mit­tee.

THE DELHI HIGH COURT As ob­served above, the ex­am­i­na­tion of the com­plaint by Delhi Med­i­cal Coun­cil is in the na­ture of peer re­view, and in con­form­ity with this na­ture, an ex­pert in neu­ro­surgery was in­cluded as a part of the con­cerned com­mit­tee

THE DELHI HIGH COURT

NEW DELHI: The Delhi high court has dis­missed a pe­ti­tion, al­leg­ing med­i­cal neg­li­gence by a neu­ro­sur­geon, lead­ing to the death of a woman who was suf­fer­ing from brain tu­mour.

Jus­tice Vibhu Bakhru said the is­sue of whether there was any neg­li­gence on the doc­tor’s part is to be as­sessed by the med­i­cal prac­ti­tioner and un­less it is shown that there was any flaw in the de­ci­sion mak­ing process or there was malafide, no in­ter­fer­ence by the court would be war­ranted.

“... this court finds no merit in the present pe­ti­tion and the same is dis­missed,” the court said.

The court was hear­ing a plea by a man, whose wife was be­ing treated by Dr S K So­gani, a neuro- sur­geon, for menin­gioma/ brain tu­mour and she died in May 2011, af­ter her third op­er­a­tion.

The man had al­leged in the plea that the doc­tor was neg­li­gent in treat­ing his wife and he had op­er­ated upon her thrice from Novem­ber 2003 to May 2011.

It was al­leged that the doc­tor con­ducted the op­er­a­tion on May 7,2011, with­out a prior MRI scan and it was an act of negli- gence.

He ini­tially filed a com­plaint be­fore Delhi Med­i­cal Coun­cil (DMC) which passed the or­der that no case of med­i­cal neg­li­gence had been made out against the doc­tor in treat­ing the woman as she died due to “the known com­pli­ca­tions as­so­ci­ated with surgery of such na­ture”.

This was chal­lenged by him be­fore the Med­i­cal Coun­cil of In­dia (MCI) which dis­posed of the plea by ap­prov­ing the find­ing of its Ethics Com­mit­tee that there was no med­i­cal neg­li­gence.

The man then ap­proached the high court against the MCI’S or­der.

The MCI was rep­re­sented through ad­vo­cate T Singhdev who coun­tered the sub­mis­sions made by the man.

The court noted that pro­ceed­ings be­fore DMC or MCI re­gard- ing med­i­cal neg­li­gence are in na­ture of peer re­view and a ju­di­cial re­view on the mer­its of the de­ci­sion is not avail­able, ex­cept on lim­ited grounds, where it is found to be such that no rea­son­able per­son could pos­si­bly have ar­rived at this de­ci­sion.

“It is clear from the above that nei­ther any sep­a­rate le­gal opin­ion was sought by the Ex­ec­u­tive Com­mit­tee nor was any such le­gal opin­ion ten­dered. How­ever, an ex­pert was in­cluded as a part of the Ex­ec­u­tive Com­mit­tee, which had de­lib­er­ated on the com­plaint filed by the pe­ti­tioner (man).”

“As ob­served above, the ex­am­i­na­tion of the com­plaint by DMC is in the na­ture of peer re­view, and in con­form­ity with this na­ture, an ex­pert in neu­ro­surgery was in­cluded as a part of the con­cerned com­mit­tee,” it said.

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