Law numbs anaesthesiologist’s mind-numbing arguments

  • Posted on: April 19, 2016

Mr. Jaiswal, a senior citizen and a known diabetic, visited Dr. Chaudhary – an anaesthesiologist – at his clinic to take treatment for a wound on the thumb of his right leg. The doctor drained the wound and advised periodical dressing, however, the wound was not cured and the patient visited the doctor again at his clinic.

Dr. Chaudhary advised that the wound should be operated under anaesthesia, and performed the surgery at his clinic, during which Mr. Jaiswal died. What was more shocking than the rushed surgery was the doctor’s defense when Mrs. Jaiswal summoned him at Jharkhand State Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission. As if nothing had happened, Dr. Chaudhary claimed that he was qualified for medical surgery and Mrs. Jaiswal did not prove any negligence committed by him. He also claimed to have taken an informed consent from Mrs. Jaiswal for the surgery.

This stance taken by Dr. Chaudhary stunned Mrs. Jaiswal. She pointed out that the doctor did not take a consent for the surgery. And if he was as qualified as he claimed to be, did he not know that such a surgery is dangerous for a known diabetic patient, questioned Mrs. Jaiswal.

The Commission was equally stunned at the doctor’s decision for performing the surgery, and the stubborn stance he took to defend his decision. It was observed that the anaesthesiologist did not follow protocol before administering anaesthesia. He neither consulted a cardiologist nor advised the patient to consult one. What’s more is that he did not even record the patient’s blood pressure before performing the surgery. The Commission observed that the OT note presented by the doctor as evidence was actually a prescription advising medicine which should have been in Mrs. Jaiswal’s position. And the signatures on the consent form presented by Dr. Chaudhary did not match with Mrs. Jaiswal’s signature. This was evidence enough for the Commission to silence the anaesthesiologist. Dr. Chaudhary was held guilty of medical negligence and was ordered to pay five lacs to Mrs. Jaiswal as compensation.

Source: Order pronounced by Jharkhand State Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission, on 29th February, 2016