No doctor has all the answers. There is a purpose behind the term “practicing” medicine.
Let’s start with defining negligence. As we all know, there are many different definitions of negligence because it falls under so many different categories of law, including contract, tort, and criminal law. Negligence is defined as failing to take proper care of something, which causes damage, in layman’s terms. In other words, it would be considered irresponsible negligence or acting in a way that a rational person would not. Legally, we can claim that there was a breach of responsibility that led to harm.
The idea of negligence and negligence law first appeared in the well-known case of Donoghue v. Stevenson. Prior to this decision, conventional wisdom held that a variety of connections resulted in specific duties, including those between a doctor and patient and an employer and an employee. In another well-known English case, King v. Phillips, it was noted that carelessness is only a factor where the plaintiff suffers a direct loss as a result of the wrongdoing and the loss should have been predictable. So, in a nutshell, we may argue that harm is a necessary component of carelessness.
As a result of the violation of the duty of care caused by negligence, another person has a legal right that must be honoured. In a recent forensic address, Charles Worth and Percy claimed that there are three definitions of negligence. Those are
- a mentality that is in opposition to intention
- reckless behaviour
- The failure to exercise due care
Humans are prone to making mistakes, but occasionally these errors harm someone else so severely that it may even endanger their life. One such instance of carelessness is known as “medical negligence.” Since physicians will be treating their illnesses and other health problems and will ultimately be responsible for curing and healing them, patients frequently view them as deities. As such, we at least expect them to exercise caution when performing their obligations toward their patients. However, even God has made mistakes, and as no one is flawless, physicians are also fallible. As a result, when they make mistakes, their patients suffer serious injuries and occasionally pass away. Medical malpractice, also known as medical negligence, is when a patient receives incorrect, careless, improper, or negligent treatment from a doctor, dentist, nurse, or other healthcare provider. English laws do not specifically address medical carelessness; instead, it just treats physicians like any other profession. The court dealt with two cases of claimed medical homicide by gross negligence and a case involving an electrician simultaneously in the very recent case of R v. Prentice & Sulleman Adomako and Holloway. It used the same logic to all three cases.
History demonstrates that the perspective on medical malpractice has changed from a criminal to a tort approach. The law of Hammurabi, which the king of Babylon created centuries before the advent of Christianity, states that if a patient died during surgery, the doctor’s hands would be chopped off. Manusmriti, Charaka Samita, and other works address the problem of medical neglect. As a result, it was viewed more as a tort than a crime. However, because to the quick advancement of civilization, this perspective was altered, and it is now considered a tort so that the court can provide the victims damages. The legislation on medical negligence has evolved steadily over time as a result of several rulings.
The Bolam test, which is also the approved test in India, was developed to give an extra perspective for professionals like medical practitioners. As was previously noted, the idea of negligence is quite distinct from professional negligence. The illustrious Mc Nair observed:
“A doctor is not guilty of negligence if he has acted in accordance with a practice accepted by a responsible body of medical men skilled in that particular art.”
In the case of Jacob Mathew v. State of Punjab, this strategy was adopted in India after a thorough review and study of both English and Indian rulings revealed the following:
“A lawyer never promises a client that they will always prevail in court. A doctor wouldn’t always guarantee a patient a full recovery. A surgeon cannot and can not promise that the outcome of surgery will always be advantageous, much less completely advantageous, for the patient. The only assurance that such a professional may offer, or can be inferred to have given, is that he has the necessary expertise in the profession in which he is engaged, and that he would be using that skill with acceptable competence while carrying out the performance of the work entrusted to him”.
TYPES OF MEDICAL NEGLIGENCE:
Different things may go wrong in the medical field. It often happens when a medical professional departs from the necessary level of care.
So, we may conclude that any deviation from the recognised norms of treatment and care is regarded to be medical negligence, and if it results in harm to the patient, the operating physician, other medical personnel, and/or the hospital may be held accountable.
The following list includes some typical categories of medical negligence:
Incorrect diagnosis – The first step following admission in a hospital, clinic, or other medical facility is the diagnosis. Correct symptom diagnosis is essential to providing any patient with medical care. However, if a patient receives inadequate care as a result of a diagnostic error, the doctor may be held accountable for any further harm or losses.
A delayed diagnosis is considered medical malpractice if another doctor might have reasonably made a timely diagnosis of the same problem. If the sickness or injury is not addressed and is allowed to deteriorate over time, a delay in diagnosis may result in the patient suffering unwarranted harm. It goes without saying that any delay in identifying and treating an injury might lower the patient’s chances of recovering.
Error in surgery – Because even the smallest mistakes can have a significant impact on the patient, surgical procedures call for a high degree of ability and should be performed with care and carefully. Surgical errors include things like doing surgery in the wrong place, significant blood loss, internal organ laceration, and leaving a foreign item in a patient’s body.
Unnecessary surgery – Unnecessary surgery is typically linked to a wrong diagnosis of a patient’s symptoms or a medical choice made without fully weighing the pros and disadvantages of all available choices. Alternatively, because it is quicker and easier than other options, surgery is often preferred to traditional therapy.
A professional (anesthesiologist) is required to administer and monitor the patient’s response to anaesthesia since it is a dangerous component of any major medical procedure. The anesthesiologist must evaluate the patient’s health, medical history, current medicines, and other factors before beginning any surgery requiring anaesthesia in order to choose the drug that will be most effective. Even during the pre-operative medical examination or the treatment itself, anaesthesia errors might occur.
Misconduct in labour and delivery – Childbirth is a challenging experience for a woman, and if the physicians and nurses don’t handle it appropriately, it gets worse. Instances of medical malpractice during childbirth include managing a challenging birth, problems with induction of labour, incorrectly diagnosing a newborn’s illness, and many others.
Long-term negligent care – Over the course of a protracted duration of care, medical negligence can also manifest itself subtly. Typically, medical malpractice manifests itself as a failure to monitor patient outcomes or to continue therapy as prescribed.
ESSENTIALS OF MEDICAL NEGLIGENCE:
The phrases “medical negligence” and “negligence” are combined to form the term. Failure to use reasonable care alone constitutes negligence. The same applies to negligent medical care. The doctor is solely the defendant in cases of medical negligence.
The following elements are necessary in a negligence claim:
- The plaintiff was owed a duty of care by the defendant.
- That obligation was broken by the defendant.
- The result of the violation was harm to the plaintiff.
The following are the obligations of care that a doctor owes to his patients:
- it is his responsibility to determine whether to take on the case or not,
- what therapy to provide, and
- How to administer that treatment.
The patient has a right to take legal action against the doctor if they don’t fulfil the aforementioned obligations. When a doctor fails not provide the level of care that a reasonable doctor would, this is considered a breach of duty.
The Supreme Court ruled in Kusum Sharma v. Batra Hospitalthat a doctor frequently chooses a surgery with a higher element of risk when, in doing so, he genuinely feels that it will increase the patient’s prospects of success. If a doctor took a bigger risk to relieve the patient’s pain and it didn’t work, it could not be considered medical malpractice.
In the case of Jasbir Kaur v. State of Punjab, a newborn infant was discovered missing from its hospital bed. The little toddler was discovered bleeding and close to the bathroom sink. The hospital’s administration said that the boy had been hurt when a cat took him away. The hospital administration was found to have been careless and to have not exercised appropriate caution. Consequently, a settlement of Rs. 1 lakh was granted.
STANDARD OF CARE:
A standard of care outlines the proper course of treatment and dosage in accordance with the standards that a doctor should keep in mind when treating his patients. Neither the greatest nor the lowest level of care should be provided.
In this case, the degree refers to the standard of care that a regular healthcare provider with the same education and experience would provide in the same neighbourhood under comparable conditions. If the answer to this crucial question is “no” and you were injured as a consequence of the negligent care, you may be able to bring a medical malpractice claim.
The Supreme Court ruled in the case of Dr. Laxman Balkrishna Joshi vs. Dr. Trimbak Bapu Godbole and Anr. That a doctor has certain stated obligations, and that any violation of those duties might subject him to legal liability for medical malpractice. An acceptable standard of care is expected of doctors, one that has been established for their profession.
DUTY OF CARE:
In circumstances of medical negligence, a doctor has a duty of care to take reasonable precautions to protect another person from injury (patient). In general, doctors have a duty to look after their patients.
For a duty of care to be established, several conditions must be met. These are what they are:
- A doctor is not expected to treat everyone, but when he accepts a case, he is expected to treat it carefully and in line with the established standard of care. It is appropriate for a doctor or clinical practitioner to advise a patient to seek out a provider of an additional healthcare professional. However, a medical expert should handle the patient in an emergency. Unless the situation is outside of his area of competence, no healthcare practitioner should refuse to take on the case right away.
- Never should a doctor downplay or stretch out a patient’s illness. He must ensure that the patient receives the appropriate care for the sort of illness they are experiencing.
- A doctor needs patience since he can’t function without it. It is important to maintain the patient’s privacy and confidentiality. In select instances, though, he has the option to provide the specifics if he feels obligated to. For instance, if a sickness is hazardous to individuals and is spreading, he can make it known to the public and inform others.
- A doctor or medical professional is free to decide which patients to treat, but in an emergency, he or she must attend to the patient. But once a case has been started, a medical expert cannot leave it without first telling the patient’s family. A medical professional, whether temporarily or permanently licenced, should never knowingly engage in carelessness that fails to provide the required level of care for his patients.
- The acting doctor is allowed to collect his fees but must acquire the patient’s consent or permission to resign upon the arrival of the physician hired when a doctor who deals with a specific condition and has experience in that field is not available.
BURDEN OF PROOF:
Typically, it is the complainant’s responsibility to demonstrate the wrongdoing. A greater burden of proof is needed by law to prove any doctor’s alleged carelessness. To prevail in situations of medical malpractice, the patient must prove a case against the physician.
In Calcutta Medical Research Institute v. Bimalesh Chatterjee, it was decided that the plaintiff had the burden of demonstrating the absence of negligence and a lack of service.
PROOF OF NEGLIGENCE:
The burden of proof to accuse a doctor of medical negligence rests with the individual making the allegation, according to several court rulings (patient). It is common knowledge that even with experts, things may go wrong. And only if his actions fall below the level of care that he should use can the guilt or negligence be shown.
STEPS TO PROVING A MEDICAL MALPRACTICE CLAIM
- You must first demonstrate that there is a doctor-patient connection. This is the simplest action that may be taken to establish medical malpractice.
- You should next provide evidence that your doctor did not adhere to the criteria established as a requirement for this profession.
- Then demonstrate how this medical neglect caused you to incur harm.
- You must demonstrate your losses, which encompasses whatever injury you have endured as a result of the doctor’s negligence.
- For a claim of medical negligence to be successful, each of the aforementioned components must be established.
WHEN DOES THE LIABILITY ARISE?
In general, a doctor becomes liable when a patient is hurt as a result of the doctor’s negligent actions, which fell far short of the reasonable standard of care. Therefore, the patient must prove that there is a responsibility that the doctor must uphold before proving a breach of that obligation.
Liability often only becomes an issue when the complaint is prepared to meet his burden of establishing carelessness. The adage “res ipsa loquitor,” which means “the object speaks for itself,” can, nevertheless, apply in some circumstances. Most of the time, a doctor is only accountable for his own actions, but in some circumstances, a doctor may also be held vicariously liable for the actions of another. For instance, if a young doctor who is working for a senior doctor makes a mistake, the senior doctor becomes vicariously accountable for it.
RES IPSA LOQUITUR:
“The object speaks for itself,” is the meaning of the Latin proverb “res ipsa loquitur.”
Medical malpractice refers to situations when the doctor’s care fell significantly short of the established standards of care, in which case carelessness is presumed.
· Assumptions made by the doctrine include:
· The nature of the harm provides a hint that it could not have occurred without carelessness.
· The patient was in no way connected to the damage in any manner.
· Under conditions that were under the doctor’s care and control, the damage occurred.
It indicates that the court has acknowledged that carelessness has occurred by using the concept. The doctor will then have to refute this, and if he fails to do so, the patient will be deemed to have succeeded in proving medical negligence.
HOW TO PROVE A RES IPSA LOQUITUR CASE?
The injured party must demonstrate that the doctor’s failure to uphold the established standards of care a doctor must observe constituted a violation of the doctor’s duty of care. A certified statement from a subject matter expert must prove the violation. Expert testimony about the standard of care is not truly necessary in res ipsa negligence proceedings.
The following actions must be taken in order to establish a res ipsa case:
- Everyone is aware that a case clearly qualifies as res ipsa case if it seems impossible that it could have happened without the doctor’s carelessness.
- The doctor always had control over the tools or methods of therapy that led to the harm.
- The hurt was the one that the victim could not freely accept.
SOME EXAMPLES OF RES IPSA MEDICAL CASES
Below are some examples of typical res ipsa cases:
- After surgery, some item is left within the patient’s body.
- If the incorrect patient is operated on.
- If the patient’s incorrect body portion is operated on.
FILING A COMPLAINT:
Since they are engaged in a noble profession, practitioners are expected to use a reasonable amount of expertise and caution. The law varies depending on the situation and does not demand the greatest or lowest level of ability or care. If he doesn’t, a complaint may be brought against him.
MEDICAL NEGLIGENCE COMPLAINT
An accusation is what is referred to as a complaint. It’s written down. It comprises of claims and certain crucial data to prove that a customer has incurred loss or harm as a result of a service’s deficiencies.
HOW MUCH DOES A COMPLAINT COST TO FILE?
There is a small filing fee for complaints involving medical malpractice before the district consumer redressal forum.
DETERMINATION OF RESPONSIBILITY:
When a claim of medical malpractice is made, the forum notifies the defendant to provide their side of the story within 30 days of the complaint’s admission. The forum will request either the submission of an affidavit or the production of evidence in the form of court precedents, expert opinion, etc. after conducting thorough inspection.
GUIDELINES FOR A MEDICAL NEGLIGENCE CASE
- To make a complaint, go to the State Medical Council. The first action you must do if you are a victim of medical malpractice is to lodge a complaint against the physician with the State Medical Council. The state consumer court may receive the complaint, and the doctor’s or the hospital’s administrators may also face criminal charges.
- In order to complete the case as quickly as possible, the complaint must be filed in the consumer court if the primary goal is to get monetary compensation.
- In the rarest of rare cases of medical negligence, the consumer courts have the authority to suspend the doctor’s licence.
- Seek out a patient advocate the other action that is highly beneficial in situations of medical negligence is to consult a patient-lawyer.
- If the doctor has broken any obligations, a patient advocate may help the patient see clearly what happened and urge them to take the appropriate action to make things right.
- The patient may also receive assistance from the patient-advocate in situations when they are entitled to compensation for medical malpractice.
A STEP-BY-STEP PROCESS:
The next actions need to be taken:
- The State Medical Council and the neighbourhood police must both receive complaints.
- The State Medical Council may get the report if it is merely filed with the police.
- The report will be sent to different additional courts under the relevant laws if the Council deems it suitable.
- In the event that the matter is criminal in character, the state will be held accountable rather than the hospital or doctor.
- The council may also suspend the doctor’s licence for the appropriate amount of time if it determines that the situation is serious and endangers the patient’s life.
- The council will decide the doctor’s sentence if it deems him guilty based on the facts and circumstances of the case.
- The patient has the option to appeal the decision to the Medical Council of India if they are still unsatisfied.
- The patient might seek financial compensation with the aid of the consumer courts. It should be reminded that consumer courts may only award you compensation; they are powerless to penalise wrongdoers.
- The National Consumer Dispute Redressal Commission might be contacted if the complaint is still unsatisfied.
ASSEMBLING PROOF ON MEDICAL NEGLIGENCE
The following should be done when gathering evidence:
- Gather all of the medical information.
- According to the Medical Council of India’s regulations, the patient must get all medical records within 72 hours of the appointment’s date and time.
CHALLENGES THAT MEDICAL NEGLIGENCE VICTIMS FACE
In circumstances of medical malpractice, a complaint may encounter the following difficulties:
- Making decisions in medical malpractice claims takes time. So, occasionally, it causes the complaint to lose motivation.
- Sometimes the doctor has a better chance of winning the lawsuit because of the hospital’s reputation.
- In other situations, the doctor removes any pertinent evidence since they are aware that they were irresponsible, which causes a difficulty for the complaint.
- You must be aware of the limits of your insurance coverage since occasionally the insurance provider will deny a claim.
TEST REQUIRED TO ESTABLISH MEDICAL NEGLIGENCE
The test is known as the Custom Test.
- It must be demonstrated in this test that neither the hospital nor any of its employees was careless in the course of their duty.
- The second point that has to be established is that the approach used by the concerned clinician was unethical.
- The burden of evidence often rests with the complainant, although it might occasionally shift on the doctor if inadequate care is taken on that end.
INDIA’S MEDICAL NEGLIGENCE LAWS:
Medical negligence is classified into three categories under Indian law, which are
- Criminal negligence
- Civil negligence
- Violation of the Consumer Protection Act
These three statutes contain various provisions relating to redress in the form of penalty and compensation.
- CRIMINAL LAW AND MEDICAL NEGLIGENCE
The medical practitioner is treated differently under Indian Penal Code than a regular person. “Whoever causes the death of a person by a reckless or careless conduct not amounting to culpable murder will be punished with imprisonment for a term of two years, with a fine or with both,” reads Section 304A of the IPC 1860. Thus, when a patient dies while under anaesthesia during surgery, a doctor may also be held criminally liable. For this to happen, the patient’s death must also have been caused by the doctor’s willful misconduct or gross carelessness. Despite the above-mentioned rights for patients, sections 80 and 88 of the IPC also offer defences for doctors and provide a few exceptions. According to section 80, “[n]othing constitutes a crime that is done by accident or misfortune and without any criminal knowledge or purpose in the execution of a legitimate deed in a lawful way by authorised methods and with due care and caution.” According to section 88, “a person cannot be charged with a crime if she/he undertakes an act in good faith for the benefit of the other, does not intend to cause damage even if there is a danger, and the patient has openly or implicitly provided permission.”
In the case involving section 304A of the IPC, 1860, Kurban Hussein Mohammedali v. State of Maharastra stated that “To impose criminal liability under Section 304-A, it is necessary that the death should have been the direct result of the accused’s rash and negligent act, without other person’s intervention.”
- CIVIL LAW AND MEDICAL NEGLIGENCE
The area pertaining to carelessness under civil law is crucial since it encompasses several components. This rule is relevant under tort or civil law even when medical practitioners render free services. One may say that tort law begins where the consumer protection act stops. Patients can seek assistance from tort law and make claims for reimbursement where the services provided by doctors and hospitals do not fall under the purview of the CPA. Here, it is the patient’s responsibility to demonstrate that the harm resulted from the doctor’s or the hospital’s carelessness.
According to the Supreme Court’s ruling in State of Haryana& Ors. v. Smt. Santra, every doctor “has an obligation to behave with a reasonable degree of care and skill.” However, because no one is perfect and even the most renowned specialist can make a mistake in diagnosing a disease, a doctor can only be held liable for negligence if it can be demonstrated that she or he failed to act with the degree of care that no other doctor of ordinary skill would have exercised.
It was decided in Kanhaiya Kumar v. Park Medicare & Research Centre that carelessness must be proven and cannot be assumed.
- CONSUMER PROTECTION ACT AND MEDICAL NEGLIGENCE
The question of whether medical treatments fall inside the definition of “Services” as stated in section 2(1) of the Consumer Protection Act has been the subject of intense inquiry and discussion since 1990. Deficiency of service refers to any flaw, defect, shortcoming, or inadequacy in the standard, nature, or mode of performance that must be upheld by or in accordance with any currently in force law or that has been promised to be carried out by someone in accordance with a contract or in any other way regarding any service.
Where a complaint may be filed? Is a question that comes to mind? The following places are where a complaint may be filed:
- If the amount of services and compensation sought is less than 20 lakh rupees, the District Forum,
- If the value of the products or services and the compensation sought do not exceed one crore rupees, the case may be brought before the State Commission,
- Or it may be brought before the National Commission, if the value of the goods or services and the compensation sought do exceed one crore rupees.
The good news is that submitting a complaint to the District’s consumer dispute forums only costs a little amount of money. Medical services were included in the definition of “service” under the Consumer Protection Act of 1986 in 1995 as a result of the Supreme Court’s ruling in the case Indian Medical Association v. V.P. Shanta & Ors. By granting contractual patients the right to sue doctors for damage they suffered while receiving treatment, this established the connection between patients and medical practitioners and provided “procedure free” consumer protection.
MEDICAL NEGLIGENCE CASES IN HIGH COURTS/ SUPREME COURTS/ NCDR
- The Supreme Court ruled in State of Haryana v. Smt Santra that every doctor must exercise a reasonable level of care. Although no one is flawless in this world and even experts make mistakes, a doctor may only be held accountable if he fails to exercise the same level of reasonable care that any other doctor with similar training would be able to.
- The Supreme Court noted that there are several courses that are eligible for the medical profession in Achutrao Haribhau khodwa and Ors v. the State of Maharashtra. The medical profession is quite diverse. Therefore, as long as a doctor is discharging his duties with proper care and prudence, we cannot hold him accountable. He is not responsible just because he selects one action over another.
- The court dealt with a medical negligence case in which the respondent was hurt while riding a bicycle in C.P. Sreekumar (Dr.), MS (Ortho) v. S. Ramanujam. He suffered serious wounds and a hairline neck fracture. After carefully weighing his alternatives, the doctor decided against using an internal fixation treatment and instead performed a hemiarthroplasty. The procedure was carried out the next day. The respondent filed a lawsuit against the doctor for failing to treat the damage with internal fixation. The Supreme Court ruled that the appellant’s choice of hemiarthroplasty for the patient, who is 42 years old, was not so egregious as to constitute medical malpractice.
- The Supreme Court has outlined the considerations to be taken into account while determining responsibility in situations of medical negligence in Vinod Jain v. Santokba Durlabhji Memorial Hospital & Anr. In this instance, the appellant took the NCDRC to the nation’s highest court, the Supreme Court. The Supreme Court affirmed the NCDRC’s ruling and issued the following remarks:
- If a doctor follows the established criteria, he cannot be considered irresponsible just because another organisation takes a different opinion.
- A doctor does not need to be very knowledgeable about medicine; it is sufficient if he uses everyday abilities that a guy in that career of his would be capable of.
- A doctor cannot guarantee a patient’s recovery since he has no control over it. He can only do his best. The only assurance he can offer is that he possesses the necessary abilities for the job, and while carrying out this responsibility, he should discharge his responsibilities as a reasonable man of the profession and in line with the medical profession’s standard of care.
NCDR- The National Consumer Dispute Redressal Commission
The National Consumer Dispute Redressal Commission addressed the subject of IVF process failure in the case of Dr. M. Kochar v. Ispita Seal. Due to the failure of this treatment, the patient filed a case against the doctor for medical negligence. The National Commission ruled that a doctor cannot be held accountable for medical malpractice if they are unsuccessful in operating on a patient.
JUDGEMENT ON MEDICAL NEGLIGENCE FROM THE SUPREME COURT
SOME OF THE SEMINAL SUPREME COURT RULINGS ON MEDICAL MALPRACTICE ARE LISTED BELOW:
- Dr. Kunal Saha’s case was a milestone decision in medical negligence cases, and it is the first case that springs to mind when considering the largest sum of compensation awarded to date. In the case known as the Anuradha Saha Case, Represented By Sri… vs. Dr. Sukumar Mukherjee and Others was involved. In this instance, the patient’s wife had a drug allergy, and the physicians’ negligence in failing to provide the right medications for her finally made her condition worse and caused her death. The doctor was found guilty of medical malpractice by the court, and Rs. 6.08 crore in damages were given as punishment.
- In the instance of V.Kishan Rao vs. Nikhil Super Speciality Hospital, a woman who was to get treatment for malaria fever was given an alternate course of action. The hospital administration was sued by a member of the Malaria Department for providing his wife with inadequate care while she was being treated for typhoid fever rather than malaria fever. The spouse received compensation in the amount of Rs. 2 lakhs, and the res Ipsa loquitor concept was utilised in this instance.
- The Supreme Court ruled in Jacob Mathew.V. State of Punjab that in some situations, doctors must make tough decisions. Sometimes circumstances force people to make riskier decisions because they have a better possibility of succeeding. And in certain circumstances, there is less danger and a larger likelihood of failure. Therefore, the choice will rely on the case’s facts and circumstances.
- The appellant in Juggan Khan v. State of Madhya Pradesh was a licenced homoeopathic physician. A woman visited him for guinea worm treatment after viewing advertising. She began to feel restless after taking the medication he recommended, and even after receiving some antidotes, she passed away in the evening. In accordance with Section 302 of the IPC, the defendant was found guilty of murder. The court determined that prescribing hazardous medications without conducting adequate research or having awareness of them was irresponsible.
- The Apex Court addressed a case involving an accident at an “Eye Camp” in Uttar Pradesh in A.S. Mittal and another v. State of UP and Others. About 108 individuals were operated on at the camp, 88 of them had cataract surgery. 84 of these individuals had their eyesight permanently harmed. It was discovered that the usage of regular saline during the procedures was to blame for this accident. As this constitutes medical negligence, the court held the doctor accountable. According to Article 32 of the Constitution, a PIL was filed in this matter.
- In the case of Poonam Verma v. Ashwin Patel and others, the respondent possessed a diploma in homoeopathic medicine and treated a patient who had a high fever with certain allopathic medications. The patient was then transferred to a nursing facility, where he passed away. The respondent was found responsible by the court because his conduct constituted medical negligence and he was licenced to practise homoeopathy but not under the allopathic system. The definition of “Medical Negligence” is provided by the Supreme Court.
- Typhoid-stricken kid was admitted to the hospital of the appellant in Spring Meadows Hospital and others v. Harjol Ahluwalia. The boy received an injection from the nurse, following which he passed out. After taking every precaution, the infant was sent to AIIMS. The parents were notified by the local doctors of the child’s severe condition. The overdose shot that was given to the toddler caused him to go into cardiac arrest. The doctor and nurse were found accountable by the court for this carelessness.
- In Bhalchandra Alias Bapu & Another v. State of Maharashtra, the Supreme Court stated that while criminal negligence is the gross failure to exercise reasonable care and precaution to guard against both the public and an individual, negligence is the failure to do something that a reasonable man would never do.
Despite the fact that patients view physicians as being on a par with God, they nevertheless have faith in their ability to heal themselves and improve following therapy. But occasionally, even medical professionals make mistakes that end up costing people a lot of money in a variety of ways. Additionally, sometimes the errors they make are so harmful that the patient must deal with issues and endure excruciating discomfort.
The use of equipment and medical tools in the health care industry should be done with appropriate care and caution since it might result in a consumer damage, which could then lead to a complaint being filed against the physicians and the other authorities concerned. However, there is no law that may hold the makers of such defective equipment responsible for the losses.
Another significant issue is that the Consumer Protection Act of 1986 does not apply to services provided without charge. Patients that sustain injuries are harmed, which presents a dilemma.
Due to certain significant medical malpractice incidents where patients were permanently crippled, people are losing trust in the medical profession. For the medical industry, some serious reflection and analysis are necessary. In terms of self-governance, it has failed totally. It is necessary to establish and change medical ethics in order to practise absolute righteousness.
  UKHL 100.
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 Charles worth & percy, negligance – 559 (christopher walton, 14th ed., 2019).
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