The Supreme Courts judgment drew muted reactions with most top private hospitals and even the Indian Medical Association and the Medical Council of India withholding comments citing lack of direct knowledge of the case. The unprecedented amount,though,elicited some off-record murmurs about it being too high by Indian standards.
Javed Chaudhry,former health secretary who termed the judgment as a trendsetting one said that the fact that it was under the consumer laws that Dr Sahas fight of a quarter century was fought should be a trigger for a new law to deal with medical negligence cases.
Dr Sanjeev Bagai,paediatric nephrologist and chairman,Nephron Healthcare,said: This judgment will go a long way in making medical science accountable. Once negligence has been conclusively proved,MCI should step in and stop these doctors from practising. The amount is unprecedented,yes,but is in line with the western philosophy of linking it with age,income of deceased,etc.
Former director general health services Dr R K Srivastava,who is currently chairman of MCIs board of governors,said he cant comment as he is yet to see the judgment. IMA secretary Dr D R Rai too declined to comment.