“Dentist ordered to pay Rs.35,000/- for extracting the wrong tooth, but the unwanted remarks about the competency of Doctor were expunged”


In an interesting case, the Chandigarh State Commission while delivering judgment in the case of Tanvir Malik V/s. Dr. Harvansh Singh Judge Institute of Dental Sciences and Hospital Chandigarh upheld the order of the District Forum, but with some important modifications.

Facts in short:
1. The Appellant – complainant on 6.9.2015 went to the Opponent’s Institute for the treatment of his braces. His tooth no. 28 and 38 were to be removed. It’s the case of the Appellant that tooth No.38 was correctly extracted, but instead of tooth No.28, the Doctor extracted tooth No.27
2. Hence the Compliant for Medical Negligence was filed.
3. It was proved that the wrong tooth was removed, hence the District forum allowed the complaint and observed that the Complainant suffered dual loss, one of his permanent Tooth and later his precious time which he had to devote to rush for the present litigation.,
4. But the Complainant was not satisfied on the amount of compensation granted, hence he filed the appeal for enhancement and the Institute also filed the appeal denying all the charges of negligence.

Held :
1. The State Commission confirmed the order of state Commission but did not enhance the compensation as prayed by the Appellant. Rs.25,000 for compensation and Rs.10,000/- for litigation cost were held to be adequate.
2. The Lower Forum had observed that,” that public health can be improved by having best of the doctors”. The State Commission observed that such finding was given by not making any reference to the record available. There is nothing on record to show that the deceased doctor was not competent/qualified to perform tooth extraction surgery. The observation made by the Forum may not be read being referred to the deceased doctor.
3. The contention of the Doctors that tooth No. 27 might have been extracted due to some emergency, was rejected by the forum, for want of any documentary evidence /note.,

In the instant case, the charges for Dental extraction were Rs.200/- each. But as there was palpable evidence on record showing negligence and which was confirmed by the experts too, the Doctors had to pay for it. However the contention which was raised about emergency was turned down for want of any note thereof. An eye opener case for every1.

Thanks and Regards

Adv. Rohit Erande
Pune. ©

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