CONSUMER CASE CC/144/2011
Tapan Kar & Anr. Vs. THE SUPERINTENDENT, ZENITH SUPER SPECIALIST HOSPITAL & Anr

Complainant Mr. T Kar filed a consumer complaint in District Forum, Barasat District, North 24 Parganas alleging that his wife during her pregnancy was under the continuing treatment and medical care of Dr. S Sen(Op.1). On 14th December, 2010 opposite party No.1 told Smt. Gopa Kar that child was in good condition and it would be better if opposite party No.1 undergoes caesarean section for early delivery of child. Thus, on the advice of opposite party No.1 the complainant admitted his wife at Zenith Super Specialist hospital. The hospital offered a package of treatment for Rs.13,000/-. The amount was deposited in the office of hospital. It is alleged that on 15 th December, 2010 at around 8.30 am caesarean section surgery was done and a male child was born to Smt. Gopa Kar.

It is the case of the complainant that Dr. S.D.Gupta, Anesthetist, before surgery administered anesthesia in the spinal cord of the patient. The wife of the patient on regaining consciousness after delivery complained that her lower limbs were paralyzed and there was no sensation before or at the time of passing urine and stool. The opposite party doctors on being informed about the aforesaid complaint had a conference with Dr. N Banerjee and Dr. S Bose. The team of the doctors decided that the patient required immediate MRI. The wife of the patient was then taken to the North City Specialist Centre for MRI. The MRI report was received on 18.10.2010. The doctors at Zenith Super Specialty hospital treated the patient Ms. Gopa Kar till 23rd December, 2010 when she was referred to Bangur Institute of Neurosciences, where surgery was conducted to remove the clotted blood. After the surgery at Bangur Institute of Neurosciences the complainant was told that it was not possible to predict how much his wife would recover from her situation. After the discharge of his wife from Bangur Institute of Neurosciences on 29.12.2010 the complainant approached Dr. Pankaj Bajpai and as per his advice he started physiotherapy for his wife which was stated to be continuing at the time of filing of the complaint at the monthly expenses of Rs.6,000/-. According to the complainant the opposite party doctors were negligent in treatment of his wife. Hence the complaint.

Opposite party No.1 in its written statement admitted that Ms. Gopa Kar was under her treatment and a caesarean section surgery was conducted for delivery of child by the patient on 15 th December, 2010 at opposite party No.3 hospital. According to opposite party No.1, opposite party No.2 had rightly administered anesthesia in the spinal cord of the patient and there was no medical negligence on the part of the opposite doctors or the hospital. Opposite parties Nos. 2 & 3 have also filed similar written statement denying all the allegations of medical negligence.

The District Forum on consideration of pleadings and the evidence found the opposite parties guilty of medical negligence. The complaint was accordingly allowed and opposite parties including the petitioners were directed as under: –

“Ordered that the complaint be and the same is allowed on contest with cost of Rs.10,000/- against the opposite parties.

Opposite parties are hereby directed to pay a sum of Rs.12,00,000/- as compensation to the wife of complainant i.e. Gopa Kar aged about + 24 years for causing her permanent disability and loss of sensation on the both lower limbs from waist to toe and causing permanent mental pain and agony till her death and said amount may be paid by each OPs to the extent of Rs.4,00,000/- also but liability to the OPs is joint and severally in respect of total compensation.

OPs are directed to comply with the order within one month from the date of this order failing which for disobeyance and non compliance of Forum’s order and for each days delay OPs shall have to pay an interest at the rate of 8% over the said amount till its final and full payment. Further for deliberate intention for
disobeyance of Forum’s order penal action may also be taken.”

The opposite parties appealed at the State Commission and also at the Apex Forum (National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission) but the appeals were dismissed.