Dismissing the appeal filed by Guru Nanak Multi Specialty (charitable) Hospital, Sector-35-B, Chandigarh, the state consumer disputes redressal commission has directed the hospital as well as its technologist to pay Rs 30,000 as compensation for handing out a wrong diagnostic report to a patient.
Upholding the order of August 5, the consumer forum held the hospital and the technologist “negligent while discharging their duties and thus, deficiency in service”, and also directed the hospital to pay Rs 10,000 as the cost of litigation to complainant Sukhwinder Kaur, a resident Sector 35.
The complainant was given a wrong diagnostic report, mentioning she could possibly be suffering from some infertility problems. Alarmed at the report, when Kaur went for the test at Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research (PGIMER), the report was found normal.
The consumer commission presided over by justice Sham Sunder (retired) on October 30 held, “When the hospital as well as technologist knew very well that the repeat test was necessary, they ought to have specifically advised Sukhwinder Kaur for the same, but they did not do so. Therefore, the district forum observes that the report of the technologist, which was not even verified by a doctor of the hospital, was absolutely wrong and misleading, which sent a shock wave to Kaur and her relatives. The hospital and technologist were, thus, clearly negligent and deficient in rendering service.”
However, granting the hospital and technologist some relief, the consumer commission said, “We are of the considered opinion that the compensation of Rs 50,000 awarded by the district forum is on the higher side which needs to be suitably reduced commiserating with the negligence and deficiency in rendering service and the harassment and mental agony suffered. In our considered opinion, compensation in the sum of Rs 30,000 will be adequate to meet the ends of justice.”
The petitioner, Kaur, had moved the forum in November 2013 alleging that she went to the hospital for a minor problem but when her blood sample was taken, she was issued a report dated on May 4, 2013. The reported stated that she was suffering from some serious ailment.
It is shown in the report that her ‘serum prolactin’ is 248.3, a symptom of serious ailment. The prolactin hormone plays a key role in fertility, triggers ovulation and allows eggs to develop and mature. When Kaur got the same test done from the PGIMER, the level was found to be within the range.
Hospital denies allegations
In their reply, the hospital, and its technologist denied any deficiency. They sought dismissal of the complaint on account of the concealment of the report. The hospital said that no patient is given any medicine by testing serum prolactin for the first time as the lab takes a repeat test after three-four days. The hospital claimed that she was asked to undertake repeat test.