July 18: Today, a city consumer court declared the All India Institute of Medical Science (AIIMS) guilty of wrongly diagnosing a woman and removing her breast citing it as breast cancer. The incident took place nine years back in 1998 and finally giving justice the court directed the institute to pay Rs. 5 lakh as compensation to the woman.
Ayesha Begum a resident of Bareilly, UP, had come to AIIMS following a reference of clinic due to a suspected breast cancer. But as the court pointed out that it was totally a case of negligence and an improper diagnosis that made the patient to under go surgery and treatment which was not at all necessary.
As the treatment of cancer is extremely complex, proper diagnosis with utmost perfection is necessary before treating the patient. In Begum’s case the confirmation of cancer was essential as the medicines which she took as part of treatment that might have cause serious side effects. But unfortunately the doctors who assess it as cancer ultimately made the patient handicap.
Justice Kapoor and member of Delhi State Consumer Redressal Commission Mahesh Chandra termed the incident as clear cut negligence and directed AIIMS to compensate the patient for the distress and mental suffering which she had undergone due to the lifetime loss.
In defense, AIIMS had presented the documents in which the woman and her family members had given approval for the treatment. But Justice Kapoor made is clear that patient’s consent can not uphold medical negligence in this case.
However, the complainant had told the commission that without considering her previous report, the doctors of AIIMS had conducted several tests and finally sorted it as cancer, which was not as written in the earlier reports from the clinic of Bareilly.
Though the compensation can not reimburse her lifetime sufferings but it can certainly made those doctors and others to at least perform their job properly.
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