Advances of allegation halted, end-stage cancer held responsible

  • Posted on: April 08, 2021

The patient, a cardiologist in her late 60s, suffered from spinal cord compression. She was admitted to the hospital where a procedure was scheduled.

However, a day or so before the procedure, a slip in the bathroom fractured her right femur. She was clearly unhappy at the indifference of hospital staff and she sued them.

It was alleged that despite several repeated requests, the nurses did not assist her in walking towards the bathroom. Once inside, she could only find a bucket, and informed the staff that it would not be possible for her to use it for bathing. Instead of resolving the issue, the hospital staff handed over some plastic tool which was not comfortable to use. Eventually she slipped and sustained fracture.

The Commission may have been as irate as the patient, as it stated the following:

“It should not be forgotten that the patient was an old lady of 66/67 years, suffering from spinal cord compression with the symptoms including numbness and weakness in legs, loss of balance and inability to stand continuously. Such a patient should be dealt with carefully and cautiously by the hospital”.

“While the patient was given general discount, her treatment at the hospital, as stated in the petition, was a horrible experience. If a doctor is dealt with in such a manner, what about the other patients / ordinary people who claimed to be treated at the said hospital with similar difficulties”.

The hospital was held negligent and the State Consumer Commission enhanced the compensation awarded by the lower court.

Source: Order pronounced by West Bengal State Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission on 5th March, 2021.