Decided on July 16,2013

Molly John, Gyneacologist Appellant
Lucky Johny Respondents


K.CHANDRADAS NADAR - (1.)IN these appeals the order of CDRF, Kottayam in CC.121/06 is challenged respectively by opposite parties 2, 1 and 3. The first opposite party is St.Thomas Hospital, Chethipuzha represented by its Administrator. Second opposite party was a Gynaecologist attached to the hospital and 3rd opposite party is the Oriental Insurance Company. The complainant approached the 1st opposite party and availed their services on 26.7.2004 when she became pregnant. She consulted the 2nd opposite party. On 13.3.2005 she underwent Caesarian operation at the 1st opposite party hospital and the operation was performed by the 2nd opposite party. The complainant alleged that after the operation, on 18.3.2005 high fever with shivering developed and she informed the matter to the doctor. The doctor assured the complainant that that was a common post operative problem and there was nothing to worry about it. The complainant was discharged from the hospital on 19.3.2005. On 20.3.2005 the fever aggravated. On 21.3.2005 the complainant again consulted the 2nd opposite party who gave some medicines but there was no improvement in the condition of the complainant. After some days she noticed yellow discharge oozing out from the surgical wound and the complainant felt hardness above stitches. On the next day itself the complainant consulted the 2nd opposite party. The 2nd opposite party informed that the surgical wound would heal within 3 or 4 months. But in the ensuing days the yellow discharge increased. The complainant again approached the 2nd opposite party. The complainant was told that there was no need for her to register as out patient for further visits and she can consult the 2nd opposite party in her consulting room directly. Accordingly the complainant visited the 2nd opposite party at least thrice a week. On 31.5.2005 the complainant visited the 2nd opposite party and the doctor insisted the complainant not to make any further payment for treatment. In the meanwhile the complainant and her husband apprehended something wrong in the attitude of the doctor and they decided to go to CMC Hospital, Velloor. There a scan was taken. After investigation the problem of the complainant was diagnosed as post LSCS abdominal wall sinuses due to a typical micro bacterial infection. At CMC Hospital, Velloor emergency surgery was done on 28.6.2005. After surgery the complainant had to remain at the hospital for 30 days and was discharged on 26.7.2005. She had to stay there for 10 days more for further treatment. Doctors of the CMC Hospital advised the complainant to dress the wound regularly for 6 months and prescribed rnedicines. The complainant underwent further treatment at Mandiram Hospital for a period of 6 months. Inspite of treatments the surgical wound did not heal except over an area below umbilicus. The complainant was again admitted in the CMC, Velloor and another the surgery was done on 9.12.2005. The complainant reliably learned that many patients who underwent surgeries at the hospital of the. 1st opposite party during the said period sustained micro bacterial infections and consequent complications. The complainant contracted infection due to the callous negligence of opposite parties 1 and 2 and therefore they have committed deficiency in service Hence she claimed compensation of Rs.19,78,267/ - with interest.
(2.)THE opposite parties filed separate version. The 1st opposite party admitted that the complainant was admitted in their hospital and she had given birth to a male baby in a cesarean session but as per hospital records she had no fever or shivering on 18.3.2005 and the complainant was discharged on 19.3.2005 at her request. At the time of discharge her temperature was 98.60 c. The 1st opposite party denied the allegation that the complainant had met the 2nd opposite party on 21.3.2005 at the Department of Gynaecology. In fact the complainant went to the hospital after discharge on 19.3.2005 only on 28.4.2005, that was on the 47th day of cesarean operation for postnatal check up scheduled on the 45th day of post partum. On 28.4.2005 she did not raise complaint of fever or shivering. On 13.5,2005 the complainant consulted Dr. Antony George with complaint of cold and he treated her. On 28.4.2005 during check up minimal oozing was present from one site of cesarean scar for which the 2nd opposite party prescribed betadine ointment. No treatment could be given to a patient in the 1st opposite party hospital without taking treatment file and any treatment given would be recorded in the file. From the records it is clear that the complainant never came to the Gynaecology Department of the 1st opposite party after 28.4.2005 except on 13.5.2005 when she met Dr. Antony George with complaint of cold. The 1 st opposite party denied the allegation that the complainant went to their hospital on 31.5.2005. Second opposite party never offered treatment free of cost. There was every chance of bacterial infection from external sources. During and subsequent to cesarean operation the 1st opposite party and its staff were taking utmost care and caution in treatment and surgery. No patient suffered bacterial infection and consequent complication. It is admitted that one or two post operative superficial surgical site infection was noticed during December 2004 to March 2005. Those patients were treated in the opposite party hospital and were cured. On detailed evaluation it was found by 1 st opposite party that a typical micro bacterium wound infection was caused by micro bacterium Avium complex sensitive to rifampicin and ethabutol. These are rare cases and infection may happen inspite of precautions and due care. If the complainant had such infection it would have been diagnosed and treated properly had she reported the matter to the 2nd opposite party. There was no negligence or deficiency of service on the part of the 1 st opposite party.
(3.)THE second opposite party raised more or less identical contentions. The 2nd opposite party further contended that the complainant herself had voluntarily abandoned further treatment after 28.4.2005. There was no negligence or deficiency of service on her part.
Based on the contention of the 1st opposite party that the hospital was insured with the 3rd opposite party, Insurance Company the 3rd opposite party was impleaded and they contended that if any micro bacterial infection was caused as a result of treatment at the 1st opposite party it would have expressed soon after surgery and not after 2 or 3 months. The certificate issued by Dr.Tomi Mathew is a collusive one on the influence of the complainant. The 3rd opposite party further contended that the amount claimed as compensation is highly excessive. They admitted that there is a valid insurance policy infavour of the 1 st opposite party for the period from 31.10.2004 to 30.10.2005.

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