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National Consumer Forum (NCDRC) Awards Rs. 1.1 crore Against Apollo Hospital For Medical Negligence

The National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission (NCDRC), highest consumer court in India, passed a historic judgment granting an award of Rs. 1.1 crore (Rs. 1 crore compensation plus Rs. 10 lakh as “punitive damage”) against the Apollo Hospital in New Delhi for wrongful delivery of a child causing permanent damage in his brain in a botched up medical procedure in 1999 (see the entire judgment below). This historic compensation was allowed on the basis of Anuradha Saha decision by the Supreme Court in 2013 in which the Apex Court awarded a total of more than Rs. 11.5 crore as compensation and held that compensation involving “medical negligence” cannot be calculated using the straight-jacket formula of “multiplier” method that had been the norm until then. Apart from Anuradha Saha’s case, this is the second highest compensation in Indian medical history against a top hospital like Apollo. Following the principles set in Anuradha Saha case, NCDRC has directed Apollo Hospital to pay Rs. 80 lakh and the main accused doctor, Dr. Sohini Verma, to pay Rs. 20 lakh. The “punitive” or exemplary damage of Rs. 10 lakh is also significant in context of Indian medical practice because “punitive” damages are awarded (mostly in Western countries) against an act of social significance and thus, all future cases of “medical negligence” where the doctor/hospital is found guilty, “punitive” damages should be awarded by the state and district consumer forums. This historic judgment by the National Consumer Forum will undoubtedly bring a ray of hope for the thousands of hapless victims of medical negligence who have been waiting for their day of justice. It will also send a strong signal to the negligent doctors and hospitals in India.

NCDRC Judg. (Apr, 2015) 1 crore compensation

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Ganesh C Mandal April 28, 2015, 9:38 am

    Thanks to PBT for posting this great newws. The medically negligent patients will get some hope from this judgement by NCRDC.

  • Jey April 28, 2015, 7:13 pm

    Great to hear that punitive damages have been awarded in this landmark judgment. Doctors/hospitals don’t take medical negligence seriously because the punishment is so small. Punitive damages will bring much needed deterrence.

  • Ilyas April 29, 2015, 1:04 am

    Thanks PBT and Dr. Kunal to give a strong base for consumer courts to take initiative in imposing heavy penalties on negligent doctors. Apollo judgment is certainly a ray of hope since consumer courts has started awarding large sum of compensation for victims of medical negligence after historic Anusaha case judgment passed by SC. It’s credit certainly goes to PBT’s hardcore efforts and struggles done by Dr. Kunal which he did during his long battle to get justice for victim Anuradha. ..BRAVO!!! Dr. Kunal…BRAVO!!!

  • GYAN PRAKASH CHOUHAN April 29, 2015, 9:18 pm

    please let me know the name of the gentle Advocate who was the lawer for this case. I, also would like to hand over my case to the same gentle advocate. my contact number is 09829385882. please help me out.

    • Anonymous May 7, 2015, 3:45 pm

      Congratulations to Dr. Saha n PBT. This is a very good judgement n reiterates that consumer fora has power to grant punitive damages. I would also like to inform that the said lawyer for complainant is now very much with the drs n Apollo hospital in my very own case against Apollo hospital n its drs. Regards, Meenakshi Jain, advocate n Member, PBT.

      • GYAN PRAKASH CHOUHAN May 24, 2015, 5:07 am

        Respected Madam , with honor and respect I, am writing to you that if you can help me out and also could convey my massage to Dr. Kunal Saha in this matter hence if its possible for him to contact me whenever he visit to India and also I,would be grateful to you if you can provide me his latest telephone number, with regards .Gyan Prakash Chouhan 09829385882