The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
Email This Page
Sack cry marks death probe

Outside, family members and friends of Rajnis Patel, 17, were demanding justice. Inside, the probe team was busy piecing together facts of the “medical negligence” case.

The day after the death of the teenaged cricketer, SSKM Hospital was a cauldron of chaos. Hundreds of people thronged the south Calcutta hospital on Tuesday morning, demanding “immediate suspension” of orthopaedic surgeon D.K. Majumdar and the medical team that had treated Rajnis for the past four months.

The teenager had been admitted to the orthopaedic ward on February 7 and underwent five operations in less than four months, before he died of “acute infection and blood loss” on Monday morning.

“We have decided to go to the West Bengal Medical Council and the Consumer Redressal Forum for justice,” said Rajnis’ father Manoj Patel.

State health minister Surjya Kanta Mishra, meanwhile, said the government would take all necessary steps once the inquiry report was tabled. “If needed, we will conduct another inquiry, but we will get to the bottom of the case,” assured Mishra.

The three-member probe team, comprising P.K. Gupta, head of the department of surgery, N.D. Chatterjee, head of the department of orthopaedics, and T.K. Ghosh, deputy superintendent of the hospital, collected all documents related to the case and briefly questioned the doctors and nurses who had been on duty on Sunday, when Rajnis’ condition worsened.

“We have been given three days to examine all documents, prescriptions and X-ray reports, besides reconstructing the entire line of treatment,” said a probe team member.

The inquiry will dig out the following facts:

—Why did the doctors falter on the measurement of the iron plate, inserted to attach the broken shinbone' Doctors conducted a second surgery on March 3 to remove the original plate, which was smaller. Why were five surgeries carried out'

—Were all the OT gadgets, plates and instruments properly disinfected' Why did the doctors fail to check the infection'

—What line of treatment was followed by the medical team under D.K. Majumdar and where did it go wrong'

—Was there negligence on the part of nurses and doctors on duty at the hospital' Why did D.K. Majumdar not come on Sunday for the emergency surgery'

Majumdar on Tuesday told the probe team that he had not been contacted by anybody from the hospital. “In any case, you know that I was sick for the past few days and have taken leave,” he added.

Orthopaedic surgeon Majumdar later told Metro that emergency surgeries are conducted at the hospital even if the doctor in-charge is not available. “I don’t know what went wrong on the surgery table on Sunday night,” he added.

Email This Page