Commission seeking opinion of a panel of doctors

The Karnataka State Commission for Protection of Child Rights (KSCPCR), which conducted the first hearing on three-year-old Mariam Kouser’s case of alleged medical negligence, directed doctors to submit her medical records by Monday.

Mudassir Pasha, the girl’s father, approached the commission seeking a ban on the doctors of Sanjay Gandhi Institute of Trauma and Orthopaedics (SGITO), who operated on her on December 15. Mariam, who had been admitted to the hospital for injuries on her left elbow, slipped into a coma after she underwent surgery. She was shifted to Dr. Malathi Manipal Hospital, where she is still critical.

Her family members, quoting the medical records, alleged that an overdose of anaesthesia administered by a trainee doctor led to her condition.

‘Manipulated documents’

“The doctors did not even measure her weight before administering the anaesthesia, which is mandatory. After this she developed hypoxia (brain damage from lack of oxygen supply). They knew of Mariam’s condition, but kept the family in the dark and manipulated the documents to cover up the mess,” the family members told the Commission in a petition.

According to Miriam’s aunt, Reshma, despite the efforts of the doctors at Manipal, Mariam could only “blink her eyes, move her hands a little and cry for sometime”.

Rs. 10 lakh

The family has so far spent around Rs. 10 lakh on her treatment. “We arranged for the money by borrowing from relatives and friends,” she said. “We have made a submission to the commission that we do not want any compensation, but we want to ensure that no other child suffers like Mariam did, and hence have sought a direction to ban their practice,” Ms. Reshma said.

Time till Monday

The Commission has given time till Monday to the five doctors whose names figure in the list of accused to submit related documents in their defence. “We had issued notice to the doctors and addressed it to the hospital. But as the doctors have been suspended, they did not get the notice on time. Hence, they sought time to produce the documents,” commission chairman Umesh Aradhya said.

The commission is also seeking the opinion of a panel of doctors before deciding on the future course of action.

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