The High Court on Sunday directed the authorities of Impact Masudul Hoque Memorial Community Health Centre in Chuadanga and IRIS Enterprise, a medicines supplier, to pay Tk 10 lakh as compensation to each of the 17 victims who lost their eyesight following surgery at a health camp.
A bench of Justice FRM Nazmul Ahsan and Justice KM Kamrul Kader passed the order, reports UNB.
Impact Masudul Hoque Memorial Community Health Centre, the main organiser of the health camp, and IRIS Enterprise, a pharmaceuticals company that provided medical supplies used during the surgeries, were directed to share the burden of the compensation equally.
The court also asked directed Impact to provide free treatment for life to the victims along with three others who also suffered infection after undergoing surgery at the health camp last March. Wherever the victims wish to be treated, Impact must bear the expenses.
Besides compensation of these victims, the court asked for the formation of a 7-member body led by a senior official (additional secretary) of the Health Ministry to look into the frequent occurrence of such incidents, where patients are made to undergo additional suffering, sometimes even loss of life, at the hands of doctors in hospitals or clinics due to wrong treatment, in the absence of any law relating to negligence in treatment.
At least one expert each from the legal and medical professions were recommended to be kept as part of the 7.
Earlier on April 1, the HC issued a rule asking officials concerned to explain as to why the same victims should not be given Tk 1 crore each as compensation after hearing a writ petition filed by lawyer Amit Das Gupta.
On March 5, a total of 24 patients underwent cataract operations at the hospital and a day after the surgery, all the patients were released.
But a few hours after returning home, 20 of them felt severe pain in their eyes due to infection and contacted Impact.
Sensing danger, the hospital authorities secretly took them to Islamia Eye Hospital and Vision Eye Hospital in Dhaka. Later 17 of the patients had to have their infected eyes removed.