Hon’ble Bench of Hon’ble Madras High Court comprising Hon’ble Justice N. Anand Venkatesh ordered that interim compensation must be paid by the government to the parents of the child after taking into consideration the incident which prima facie shows that there is negligence on part of the respondent hospital staff nurse.
In the instant case, a baby girl who is 14 days old is admitted into the hospital for treatment of Congenital Anomalies. The parents who have gone out and returned to the hospital to the ward where the child was given treatment found to their utter shock left-hand thumb of their child was severed and it was lying on the floor and the child was profusely bleeding due to severance of a portion of the left-hand thumb.
Moreover, the parents found that a Nurse at the Government Hospital while removing the pediatric venflon (cannula) from the left thumb, which was wrapped with the surgical tape, had cut a portion of the left-hand thumb of the child
Immediately, the incident was informed to the Doctors at the hospital and the Doctors had acted with alacrity and they conducted an emergency 2021 surgery by placing the cut portion in the left-hand thumb and it was sutured.
Submissions of the government advocate are as follows:
- A panel of Doctors was appointed by the Dean of the Hospital in which the incident took place and they were regularly monitoring the child.
- Moreover, an operation has been performed by the Plastic Surgeon accompanied by a Paediatric Surgeon.
- Further, an Enquiry Committee was constituted and an inquiry was conducted where the concerned staff nurse and the parents were enquired
Submissions of the petitioner’s counsel are as follows:
- Even though an operation was performed, the Doctors were not able to properly refix the thumb and as a result of the same, the child is facing a permanent disability.
- Further, the Government can shift the child to a Multi-speciality Hospital, where an attempt can be made to conduct a specialized surgery to ensure that the child is brought back to normalcy.
Taking into consideration of the above submissions the court ordered that as such the case prima facie shows that there is negligence on the part of the staff nurse because of which strict liability theory which is otherwise called Rylands Vs. Fletcher Doctrine must be applied in the instant case and interim compensation of Rs.75,000/- (Rupees Seventy-Five Thousand only) must be paid by the Government to the parents of the child.