The Madurai bench of the Madras high court, on 3 September, directed the Tamil Nadu government to pay a compensation of Rs 28.37 lakh to the family of a woman who died in 2012 due to medical negligence at a hospital in Kanyakumari district.
Rukmani, 34, was administered nitrous oxide, a.k.a. laughing gas instead of oxygen, while admitted at the Government Nagercoil Medical College and Hospital at Asaripallam.
Rukmini's husband, S Ganesan, filed a petition in 2013 seeking Rs 50 lakh as damages for himself and the couple's two children.
Rukmani was admitted to the hospital on 8 March, 2011. She suffered heavy blood loss the next day after being administered nitrous oxide, TOI reported.
According to Times of India, the court said, "The factual matrix clearly shows that the hospital authorities administered nitrous oxide to the deceased instead of oxygen. The doctors and paramedical staff of Government Nagercoil Medical College Hospital were involved in acts of medical negligence. Because of their negligence, the petitioner's wife went into a vegetative state. Thus, the state is bound to pay compensation."
The state's health secretary was ordered to pay the amount within eight weeks, at an interest of 9% interest per annum, TOI reported.