Is there any other profession, which has such kind of pathetic arrangement? The sufferers of such pitiable deals are doctors. An average doctors studies for decades and treats hundreds of patients for peanuts (Few hundred rupees). For one alleged mistake or just a legal interpretation is forced to pay millions for an incident, which can be merely procedural or circumstantial mistake.
Why one should be putting his/her future into such pathetic arrangements? The inspiring doctors need to think.
Large claims granted by courts are incentives for patients and lawyers for putting medical lawsuits. In an era, where people fight with their parents, brothers and sisters for money and property, it will be naive to think that idea of making money from doctor does not exist.
Now-a-days medical professionals need to not only be thorough with their medical subjects and the medico-legal implications, but also need to be careful about how courts may interpret the medical processes. What doctors think is a correct medical process, but it can be interpreted as negligence, in case of an adverse outcome. Other contributing factors that nail down medical profession are the sympathy to the patient and wisdom of hindsight, which everyone is flushed with as an after event.
Large compensations against medical profession are the single important factor can increase the cost of healthcare and demoralize medical profession. Doctors are always on the receiving end in case of an adverse outcome. Medical problems are very complex and sometimes it is difficult to judge the future course of disease as well as court interpretation of medical science, especially with retrospective wisdom by courts. Summarily doctors have to safeguard themselves from treatment as well as legal and documentation hassles.
Every case that goes to court involves lawyers and their expensive fees. Most of the time even though the doctors may be right, he has to defend himself with the help of lawyers. Law industry has been benefitted enormously because of consumer protection act at the cost of doctors.
Strangely doctor’s fee are quite low but lawyers charges and court compensations are really astronomical amounts, which are beyond any logic.
New Delhi: In a landmark order, the National Consumer Commission (NCDRC) has ordered Nagpur-based Ultrasound Scanning and Imaging Center to pay a compensation of Rs 1.2 crore to a disabled child and his parents in a medical negligence case. The firm has been blamed for misreporting of ultrasound on four occasions during pregnancy, resulting in the birth of a child with congenital anomalies.
Congenital anomalies are defined as structural or functional anomalies that occur during intrauterine life. The commission held that the ultrasonology center also failed to offer to terminate the pregnancy, failing to diagnose defects at an early stage. The newborn had finger pain (complete absence), right leg below the knee and left leg below the ankle joint.
The clinic – Imaging Point – was run by Radiologist Dr Dilip Ghik in Nagpur. Holding him and his clinic responsible for their failure to detect structural anomalies of the fetus at 17-18 weeks, a two-member NCDRC bench comprising Justices RK Agrawal and SM Kantikar asked them to provide for the child’s welfare, future expenses asked to pay compensation for the treatment and purchase of limb prostheses.
The order said, “The amount shall be kept as a fixed deposit in any nationalized bank (preferably SBI) in the name of the child till he attains the age of majority. Parents can get periodic interest on the FD for regular health check-up, treatment and welfare of their child. It also directed the radiologists and their clinics to pay Rs 1 lakh towards legal expenses.
As per the commission’s order, in October 2006, the child’s mother, who was pregnant at the time, consulted a gynecologist and obstetrician. The next month the doctor referred the patient to the imaging point for ultrasonography of the pelvis. USG Ghik and reported normally. Three more ultrasounds were done by the Ultrasound Scanning Centre. All USGs were reported as “no obvious congenital anomalies in the abdomen and spine of the fetal head”.
But when the gynecologist performed an elective caesarean section and after the baby was born, the mother and all the attendants were shocked to see a “severely deformed male newborn”. The girl’s parents had alleged that all this happened due to the negligent ultrasound of the radiologist.
He had prayed for a compensation of Rs 10 crore to meet future expenses. But the radiologist denied any negligence in the patient’s USG report.
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