Fortis' organ transplant licence cancelled

An official memorandum of the Health department said the licence issued to the hospital for kidney, liver and homograft in March 2010 under the Transplantation of Human Organ Act, 1994, has now been cancelled.

The cancellation came after the High Court issued a showcause notice to Fortis Hospital for the death of a patient due to alleged negligence of doctors on May 6, 2010, and directed the Health department to conduct a fresh inquiry based on the Lokayukta report.

The hospital was accused of conducting pancreas transplant on a patient, Seema Rai, without actually possessing a licence for the same. Post transplantation, Seema Rai died and her husband Pankaj Rai filed a case against the hospital for medical negligence.

After the High Court directed the Health department for a fresh inquiry, the Appropriate Authority sent the memorandum to cancel the licence of the hospital. “We were not satisfied with the explanation given by the hospital management and found that the hospital had indeed violated the Transplantation of Human Organ Act, hence the licence was cancelled,” said S Selvakumar, the then commissioner of Health department and chairman of the Appropriate Authority.

Reacting to the cancellation of licence, Dr Lloyd Nazareth, medical superintendent of Fortis Hospital, said he is yet to go through the letter. “We had given all the necessary clarification about the required licences for all abdominal organ transplants. We will appeal to the Health department to reinstate our licence,” he said.

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