The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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List of guilty in boy death swells

Calcutta, June 11: After 10 days of investigation into the death of young cricketer Rajnis Patel, the internal committee set up by SSKM Hospital has found three more doctors guilty of negligence.

Orthopaedic surgeon Dilip Majumdar, under whose care the 17-year-old was admitted, has already been suspended.

In its final report submitted to state director of medical education C.R. Maiti, the probe panel said assistant professor D. Banerjee, postgraduate trainee Souvik Bardhan and house-staff H. Baske had “thoroughly neglected their duties”.

The team observed that they did not keep proper tabs on the condition of the teenager, who was admitted on February 7 with a shinbone fracture.

Rajnis had collided with another fielder at Vivekananda Park in south Calcutta and was rushed by teammates to SSKM, where doctors detected a compound fracture. Since then till June 1, the teenager went through as many as five operations.

The aspiring fast bowler from Bhowanipore died early on June 2 of extensive infection and blood loss, a few hours after doctors operated on him for the fifth time.

The inquiry panel highlighted individual failures, elaborating on its preliminary report on the medical team’s failure to keep records of the patient’s condition or the line of treatment.

It found that Bardhan did not take the consent of his seniors before rushing Rajnis for the fifth operation at 9 pm on June 1. In general, postgraduate trainees were found guilty of not informing the patient party and senior doctors before conducting operations on other occasions as well.

House-staff Baske was found to have acted in a negligent manner by not communicating with senior doctors and for not keeping records of the patient for follow-up treatment.

The three-member panel found that assistant professor Banerjee, who was the on-call emergency surgeon on June 1, had left the orthopaedics ward without informing anyone.

“It was an emergency situation and inquiries have revealed that Banerjee not only left the ward but also his quarters without bothering to check with anybody even though he was informed and asked to report to the department,” said one member of the probe team.

The team also found Majumdar guilty of allowing junior doctors to operate on the patient.

The three-member team cross-checked their earlier findings and spoke to doctors before writing their final report, which was handed over to the director of medical education and health minister Surjya Kanta Mishra.

Maiti said the government would soon decide the fate of the three doctors named in the final report. An external committee will check the findings of the two reports, he added.

In another development related to the case, deputy commissioner, detective department-I, Soumen Mitra announced that sleuths from Lalbazar had taken over the investigation and would conduct an independent probe.

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