In a landmark judgement, the Supreme Court on Wednesday ordered a compensation of Rs 1.7 crore to a girl who lost her vision soon after birth due to medical negligence.
The incident occurred in a government hospital in Chennai.
The bench directed that Rs. 1.3 crore would be paid as compensation and Rs. 42.8 lakh would be given as reimbursement of medical expense.
The girl was born prematurely at the hospital on August 30, 1996. She was placed in an incubator in the intensive care unit of the hospital for the next 25 days.
Even after her discharge, the hospital’s doctors kept visiting her but at no point in time did they prescribed a test for the disease, Retino-pathy of Prematurity, which is frequent in cases of premature births.
By the time private doctors could flag the problem, the disease had reached its terminal stage and the girl lost vision. The bench found no justification for why the necessary tests were overlooked by the doctors and held them accountable for negligence.
The National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission granted a compensation of Rs 5 lakh in 2009, which also remained unpaid by the state government till date.