BHOPAL: Nineteen days after 11 elderly patients lost their eyesight after undergoing free cataract surgeries at a private hospital in Indore, the district administration has recommended to the Madhya Pradesh government to lodge a criminal case against the Indore Eye Hospital.
The Kamal Nath-led state government had constituted a fact-finding committee to probe the incident which came to light on August 17, nine days after cataract surgeries were performed on 14 poor patients from Dhar district under the National Program for Control of Blindness (NPCB).
Out of those 14 patients, 11 patients complained about vision loss in operated eyes possibly due to post-surgical infections contracted through virulent pathogen at the Indore Eye Hospital’s operation theatre.
Three days prior to August 8 free cataract surgeries under the NPCB, four patients had underwent paid cataract surgeries at the same private hospital, out of which two female patients reportedly lost vision under similar circumstances.
In the seven-point recommendation sent to state’s health department along with the fact-finding committee’s report, the Indore district collector Lokesh Jatav asked for a ban on eye treatment at the Indore Eye Hospital and a criminal case against the hospital.
Jatav mentions that the latest incident at the hospital is a repetition of the criminal negligence committed by the institution in the past, as 18 patients had lost vision post-cataract surgeries at the hospital in 2010-11.
He also recommended the state government to compulsorily retire the district program manager (blindness control) Dr TS Hora, who has already been suspended by the state government.
“Despite two of the four patients who underwent paid cataract surgery on August 5 losing vision, the concerned hospital was allowed to go ahead with the free cataract surgery camp on August 8 without properly taking care of the hospital infection problems. Instead, the operation theatre of the hospital was sealed five days later on August 13,” the collector mentioned in the report.
In the report, the collector has also mentioned about laxity on part of Chief Medical and Health Officers (CMHOs) of Indore and Dhar in the matter.