Supreme Court of India has stated that nursing homes without an intensive care unit (ICU) cannot conduct surgeries on patients as it amounted to medical negligence.
Bijoy Kumar Sinha had filed a petition alleging medical negligence from Dr. Biswanath Das, which led to his wife death. Das had performed a hysterectomy surgery on his wife at Ashutosh Nursing Home in Kolkata. Apparently, the nursing home did not have the facility of an ICU.
Bijoy died while fighting a long legal battle for 23 years in consumer forums, so as to get justice for his wife. His son Soumik continued the battle for his mother.
The apex court absolved Das of the medical negligence charges but ordered him to provide a compensation of Rs. 5 Lakhs to Soumik.
A bench of Justices Adarsh Kumar Goel and U U Lalit said, "Provisions of the Consumer Protection Act, 1986, are in addition to and not in derogation of any other law. Thus, the Act provides for additional remedies. The authorities under the Act exercise quasi-judicial powers. The award of damages (in the case filed by Sinha) is aimed at bringing about qualitative change in the attitude of service providers."