Women's Issues In Guyana


Family of dead maternity patient files lawsuit against Dr. Sooknanan

Posted in Health Issues,Judicial by wiig on November 20, 2006
Tags: , , ,

Kaieteur News – November 20, 2006

The family of Debora Crawford, the maternity patient who died at the New Amsterdam Hospital in 2003, is filing a lawsuit against Dr. Narine Datt Sooknanan in connection with her demise.

An attorney for the family confirmed last night that a writ has already been filed in the High Court against Dr. Sooknanan and the Attorney General.

In August last, the Guyana Medical Council disbarred Dr. Sooknanan after an investigation found that he was responsible for Crawford’s death.

However, Dr. Sooknanan subsequently took his case to the High Court.

He contended that he was never notified of the allegations against him in the notice of the hearing given by the Council.

He also contended that the Council had not notified him of an independent review it had taken into account in coming to its decision.

He further alleged that the Council had effectively denied him a fair hearing, had acted unfairly and in breach of the rules of natural justice.

On November 13, 2006, the High Court quashed the Council’s decision to remove Dr. Sooknanan from practice and directed the Medical Council to restore him to the register of medical practitioners.

Crawford’s relatives alleged that the 38-year-old mother of two from Corriverton, Corentyne, had suffered massive hemorrhaging and subsequently died during delivery on October 13, 2003. Her baby also died.

According to a complaint to the Medical Council, Dr. Sooknanan had been advised that Crawford should undergo a Caesarean section because of the size of her baby.

It was alleged that the gynecologist ignored this advice and induced labour, resulting in the patient suffering a ruptured uterus.

On August 4, 2006, the Medical Council, after completing its hearing, removed Sooknanan from the register of practitioners authorised to practice medicine.

An independent physician investigated the case for the Council.

The Medical Council found, among other things, that the physician had been negligent, and had been guilty of medical malpractice.

It issued its findings in a letter to Dr. Sooknanan dated August 4, 2006.

In the letter, the Council listed seven matters it found to have constituted negligence.

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