BENGALURU: A Consumer Commission directed Cloudnine Hospital in Jayanagar and two doctors to jointly bear the cost for a child’s death in the womb due to negligence, by paying compensation to the mother.
Partly allowing the complaint filed by N Sunitha in 2013 from Rajajinagar, the commission directed Dr R Kishore Kumar, the then CEO and MD, Cloudnine, Jayanagar; Dr Prakash Kini, consultant obstetrician and gynaecologist; and Dr Shanthi Priya, obstetrician and gynaecologist, Cloudnine, to pay Rs 7 lakh compensation with litigation cost of Rs 10,000, and reimbursement of Rs 58,720 towards medical expenses to the woman.
Though she claimed Rs 15 lakh as compensation with interest at 18 per cent per annum, the commission has struck a balance by directing opposite parties to pay Rs 7 lakh compensation, since there was negligence on part of the complainant too.
“If the awarded amount is not paid within two months from the date of the order, opposite parties should pay interest at the rate of 12 per cent on Rs 7 lakh, till the date of realisation,” said the Bengaluru Urban Additional District Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission in the order passed recently.
The expected date of delivery was mentioned as August 14, 2012, but the complainant visited the hospital on August 9, 2012, after she experienced abdominal pain the previous night. But Dr Kini who was treating her was not available.
Therefore, Dr Shanthi Priya examined her at Jayanagar branch and informed Dr Kini, who was at the other branch, that the fetal heart was normal. However, the complainant told her that she was not feeling the movement of the fetus and felt discomfort. Then, she was told to consult Dr Kini the next day. When she came the next day, however, the fetus was found dead in the womb prior to the examination by Dr Kini.
The hospital and doctors contended that the complaint be dismissed as it is false and frivolous and there was no negligence on their part. On this, the commission observed that Dr Kini and Dr Priya could have insisted that the complainant get admitted in the hospital on the first day itself. Even the complainant herself also never requested the doctors to admit her. Because of negligence on the part of both the parties, the untoward incident happened, the commission opined, while awarding compensation.