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Home » Homeopathy doctor administrating allopathic medicines is medical negligence: NCDRC | India News

Homeopathy doctor administrating allopathic medicines is medical negligence: NCDRC | India News

NEW DELHI: A homoeopathic doctor is not qualified to prescribe allopathic medicines and will be liable for medical negligence and will have to pay compensation if a patient suffers from medical complications, the National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission has ruled.
The ruling by the apex consumer commission came almost two decades after a woman in Nagpur died soon after a homoeopathy doctor gave injections to her for her stoamch pains. The commission directed the doctor to pay compensation of Rs 10 lakh to her family members, stating that he is a diploma holder in homoeopathy and is not qualified to practise allopathy.
The incident took place in 2000 when the woman was taken to the doctor by her family members after she complained of stomach pain. The doctor gave two injections —Baralgan and Dexamethasone. Immediately after the injections, the woman felt uneasy and died. The post-mortem report attributed the death to anaphylactic reaction caused by the injections.
Holding the doctor guilty of medical negligence, a bench of Dr S M Kantikar and Dinesh Singh said the doctor is a diploma holder in homoeopathy and is unqualified to practise allopathy, and liable for medical negligence. It upheld the state consumer commission order holding the doctor guilty but increased the amount of compensation from Rs three lakh to Rs 10 lakh and granted him four weeks’ time to pay the money.
“It is clear that the opposite party (doctor), being a homoeopathic practitioner, is not having any authority to administer allopathic medicines i.e. injections. Thus, without any authority he administered the said injections of allopathic medicines and as her (patient’s) death was caused due to reaction of the said injections, it proves negligence on his part,” the NCDRC said.
The commission rejected the plea of the doctor who contended that he should not be made liable for negligence as he has been acquitted in the criminal case lodged by deceased’s family.
“Liability for a civil wrong and liability for a criminal offence are different. The objective of criminal law is to punish, the objective of civil law is to compensate, they essentially differ in their context and consequence. The two are not mutually exclusive, but co-extensive,” it said.
The NCDRC said, “Considering the case in its entirety, and, specifically, that the death of the patient occurred in 2000, and we are now in 2019, and the patient died at a young age (in her 20’s), and left behind her husband and (as of then) two minor children, though it is difficult to quantify life in monetary terms, in our considered view, compensation of Rs 10 lakh with simple interest at 12% per annum from the date of arguments before this Commission from October 2018 would be just and equitable in the totality of the facts and specificities of the case.”

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