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Girl`s death due to rabies: HC asks family to move DMC

Last Updated: Tuesday, May 13, 2014 - 21:33

New Delhi: The Delhi High Court today asked the family members of a girl who died of rabies at a private hospital here to file a complaint with Delhi Medical Council (DMC) for a probe into her death and to ascertain whether there was any lapse in her treatment.

Expressing concern over repeated instances of delay in postmortem on account of holidays, Justice Manmohan said there is lack of coordination between police and health department.

"There is a problem in structural response. There is lack of coordination between police and health department which needs to be worked out," he said.

The court tagged the plea of her family members with the one seeking constitution of standing and roaster based boards of doctors to conduct postmortems without any delay in such cases that is being heard by the bench headed by Chief Justice G Rohini.

The matter is now listed for next hearing on August 13.

The court had on May 12 ordered immediate postmortem after her family members had approached it complaining that neither autopsy had been done nor her body handed over to them.

Delhi government today informed the court that postmortem was conducted on May 12 as per its order and placed on record the circular issued for constituting the board to perform the autopsy as well as videograph the entire process.

The court had intervened and asked the health department of Delhi government to order Max Super Speciality Hospital at Patparganj not to discharge 23-year-old Kavita Joshi from the hospital.

The family members had moved the court again after her
Demise alleging that the hospital and other authorities neither performed the postmortem nor allowed them to pay last respects.

Justice Manmohan, who had issued notice to Delhi government, Police Commissioner and others including the hospital, was yesterday informed by the counsel for the government that the postmortem would be conducted.

Zubeda Begum, appearing for Delhi government, also assured the court that the family members will be allowed to see the body before the postmortem.
Joshi had been on ventilator since May 5 after being bitten by a dog.

The plea, filed through lawyers R K Saini and Awadh Kaushik, sought a direction to Delhi government to form a board of doctors in consultation with Delhi Medical Council to probe into the death Joshi and "to ascertain as to whether there have been lapses in her medical treatment while being admitted with the hospital."

"A writ of mandamus directing and commanding the respondent No. 1 and 2 (Govt and police) to conduct the postmortem ... By a board of government doctors in which no doctor of Lal Bahadur Shastri Hospital be a member and thereafter, to hand over her body to her family without any further delay," it said.

The plea also sought a direction to authorities to videograph the postmortem process.

The plea alleged that the officials of the hospital became "annoyed and furious" and started abusing the family members and attendants of the girl and pushed them out of the hospital on May 7.

They also appointed personal guards on the hospital gate in order to prevent their entry into the hospital, it said.

It further said "the hospital management did not provide any status about the condition and treatment of the patient (deceased) rather on asking, they very arrogantly and furiously passed contemptuous comments".

"On May 9, the family members of the girl heard some whispers that the patient had expired and they requested the management of hospital to allow them to see her but they were not allowed," the plea added.

The court, on May 8, had directed the hospital not to discharge the patient and "continue the requisite treatment".
The staff had started insisting that her parents get her discharged from the hospital and take her to some other place as there was a risk of infection, the plea said.
Meanwhile, Max Super Speciality Hospital, in a release, refuted the claims of the family members and said that the girl was given proper treatment and the family was fully informed about the patient`s condition.

First Published: Tuesday, May 13, 2014 - 21:33
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