Reacting to the Hindustan Times report on how a 14-year-old lost his right arm due to medical negligence at the Sanjay Gandhi Memorial Hospital (SGMH)—as the boy’s family has been alleging—the Delhi government on Tuesday appointed a three-member expert committee to look into the matter.
“We took the decision today morning. We are concerned about the situation and will get to the bottom of this,” said J.P. Singh, principal secretary (health).
The committee of orthopaedic surgeons is headed by Dr Anil Dhall, head, orthopaedics, Maulana Azad Medical College (MAMC), Dr A.K. Gupta, professor and Dr Sudhir Kumar, head, orthopaedics, Guru Tegh Bahadur Hospital.
“We have asked them to submit their findings within a week. Depending on the outcome, appropriate action will be taken,” said Singh.
The victim, Ravi Kumar, was taken to SGMH in Mongolpuri, west Delhi, after he fell from a swing on September 29. After X-ray reports revealed multiple fractures in his right arm, the doctors plastered his arm, without paying heed to the wounds.
When his pain did not subside, the family went back to SGMH on October 2. In their complaint, the family alleged that since October 2 was a national holiday and the hospital was short-staffed, the doctors did not examine the boy thoroughly.
Dissatisfied, they went to a private practitioner who removed the cast and advised that Ravi be taken immediately to the emergency wing at SGMH. While the family was told that Ravi’s arm needed an operation, the doctors amputated the entire arm without informing the family. Acting on their complaint, the Delhi government had earlier appointed a committee, the findings of which went against the hospital. But, since none of them were orthopaedic surgeons, they requested the hospital to form another expert committee to establish the level of negligence.
While it took the Delhi government almost two weeks to appoint the committee, the hospital sat on the internal committee’s findings for two months before moving the file to the Delhi government.