Case nº First Appeal No. 218 Of 2011, (Against the Order dated 05/04/2011 in Complaint No. 3/2008 of the State Commission Punjab) of National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission, November 28, 2016 (case Lt. Col. Atma Singh (Retd.) Vs 1. Managing Director, Fortis Healthcare Ltd. and Ors. 2. Dr Ashok V Choridiya 3. Dr, A.S. Bawa Urology Surgeon 4. Dr K.P.Singh Endocrinologist 5. Dr Rashmi Saluja)

JudgeFor Appellant: Mr. Harmanjit Singh Thiara, Advocate with Ms. Gina Bains and Ms. Dimple, LRs. and For Respondents: Mr. Sajad Sultan, Advocate
PresidentMr. D.K. Jain,President and Dr. S.M. Kantikar,Member and Mrs. M. Shreesha,Member
Resolution DateNovember 28, 2016
Issuing OrganizationNational Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission


Dr. S. M. Kantikar, Member

  1. The instant appeal is filed by the complainant against the order of the State Commission; Punjab dated 5.4.2011, whereby the complaint has been dismissed. The brief facts relevant for this appeal, gathered from the complaint, are:

    On 17.05.2007, Lt. Col. Atma Singh''s wife Smt. Raminder, since deceased, (for short "the Patient") had gone to Fortis Health Care Centre, Mohali (OP-1- for short, "the Hospital") for pre-checkup for her knee surgery. She was referred to Dr. K. P. Singh, an Endocrinologist/(OP-4) for consultation. The patient''s blood reports revealed high Potassium (K+) level, and therefore, she was admitted on the same day in OP-1 hospital as an emergency case. On 19.05.2007, after routine blood and radiological investigations (Ultrasonology [USG] and CT scan), she was diagnosed as a case of left Kidney tumour. On the same day, Dr. Hemant Hardikar, Urologist, informed the patient that, it''s a cancerous tumour with the chances of rapid spread. He insisted for immediate surgery. He did not explain any post-operative complications like bleeding, pain and other side effects. It was shock to the patient, she or her relatives were hardly given any time to think over and have a second opinion and also to get it referred through ECHS as the complainant was an ex-serviceman. Dr. Hemant, not a party to this complaint, neither advised biopsy to confirm the diagnosis nor cancer expert was consulted. He did not explain the alternative method of removal of kidney tumour by Radio Frequency Ablation, whereby the kidney could be saved. On 23.05.2007, without proper discussion or informed consent, the Radical Nephrectomy (removal of kidney and mass) surgery was performed by Dr. A. S. Bawa,(OP-3), the head of Department of Urology. After surgery, the patient was shifted to HDU (High Dependency Unit) and OP 3 advised injection Clexane for 5 days, i.e. up to 27.05.2007. It was alleged that injection ''Clexane'' was advised carelessly in high dose.

  2. It is further alleged that, the removal of drain within three days after first surgery was major blunder, which resulted into complications and deterioration of patient''s condition. On 28.05.2007 Dr. K. P. Singh (OP 4) at about 11.45 a.m. examined the patient and found her in a very serious condition. He advised shifting of the patient to SPICU. Her Hemoglobin (Hb)% level was dropped to 6 g/dl. In spite of said low level of Hb%, blood was not transfused or no specific treatment was given. But, the opposite parties falsely mentioned in the case summary that blood transfusion was given on 28.05. 2007. Till 5.00 p.m. in charge of SPICU or Endocrinologist, failed to diagnose the cause of abdominal pain or the side effects of Clexane. Dr. A. S. Bawa felt no need for USG and expressed no chance of infection in the closed abdomen by collection of blood. The USG performed in the evening, revealed about 600 ml of fluid collection in the abdomen. It was a delay in diagnosis, thus, negligence on the part of OP/doctors because if USG would have been done in the morning on 28.05.2007, it would have saved the patient from critical condition. More than 12 hours were lost, without proper diagnosis. On the next morning, Dr. A. S. Bawa told the complainant that the condition of the patient was very critical and advised C.T. Scan. At 11.00 A.M., Dr. Ashok Chordiya examined the patient and put her on ventilator. The 2nd surgery i.e. emergency re-exploration was performed at 3 AM on 30.05.2007. In fact, 2nd surgery could have been done immediately after USG report which showed 600 ml fluid in the abdomen, but the doctors failed to examine the patient and to provide proper treatment within time. The said delay further caused fall in blood pressure of the patient leading to damage to the kidney, lungs and heart. Thus, the patient suffered further pain as well as internal bleeding. It took almost 16 days for bleeding to stop. It is further alleged that, Dr. Bawa had proceeded on leave w.e.f. 6.6.2006. No surgeon was in the hospital to take care of the patient. The patient died on 23.6.2007. Alleging deficiency in service and medical negligence on the part of the opposite parties, the complainant filed on 22.1.2008, being complaint No. 3 of 2008, before the State Commission, Punjab praying for award of a total compensation of Rs. 50 lac from the OPs.

  3. The State Commission vide order dated 15.12.2009 partly allowed the complaint and awarded compensation of Rs. 10 lac to the complainant with costs of Rs.20,000/- to be paid jointly and severally by the OPs.

  4. Both the parties preferred Appeals before this Commission. This Commission, vide order dated 26.8.2010, set aside the order of State Commission and remanded back the complaint to the State Commission to decide it afresh in accordance with law, after affording reasonable opportunity to both the sides to make their submissions on the strength of existing pleadings, evidence and other material. After the remand, the State...

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