Liabilities of doctors under Indian Penal Code(IPC) ppt
Presented By-Dr. Bhamini Thukral
What is IPC? The Indian Penal Code 1860(IPC) is the most fundamental document in the entire judiciary of India, that lists all the cases and punishments that a person committing any crime is liable to be charged with, including doctors.
Provision of IPC According to the provisions of Indian Penal Code 1860 (IPC), any act of commission or omission is not a crime unless it is accompanied by a guilty mind (MENS REA).
Sections of IPC relating to Medicalprofession Sec 52-Describes “Good Faith” Sec 80-Accident in doing lawful act Sec 81,83 Sec 88-Act not intended to cause death, one by consent in good faith for person’s benefit Sec 90-Related to consent Sec 91,92 Sec 176-Failure to inform police when essential
Contd..• Sec274-276-Related to adulteration of drugs• Sec 304-A-Deals with death caused by a negligent act• Sec 269-271- Related to spread of infectious disease and disobedience of a quarantine rule• Sec 306-309-Are related with abetment of suicides• Sec 312-314-Related to causing miscarriage, abortion and hiding such facts• Sec 315-316-Deals with act to prevent child being born alive or to cause it to die after birth
Contd. Sec 319-322-Are related to causing hurt, grievous hurt, loss of vision, loss of hearing or disfigurement Sec 336-338- Deals with causing hurt by rash or negligent act.
Key points to note Thin line of difference between Section 304 and 304-A in Sec. 304 there is no intentional act of negligence while in Sec 304-A the act is never done with the intention to cause death Under Sec.304 the offence is non-bailable while in case of Sec.304A the offence is bailable
Legal terms used under IPC• Non-Bailable offences- Grave offences carried out under Human Organ Act, 1994, are non-bailable offences in which no bail is granted and the person is convicted and imprisoned for a term extending more than ten years.• Warrant Case- Its related to an offence punishable with death, life imprisonment or imprisonment for more than two years. If a doctor helps a pregnant woman in getting rid of the child or causes the child’s death after birth, it represents a warrant case.• Summons Cases- If a doctor acts negligently by using infected syringe or instrument resulting in an infection to an uninfected patient, it exemplifies a summons case.
Contd..• Non Cognizable Offences- These are those offences in which a police officer cannot arrest without a warrant. In cases where a doctor knowingly disobeys a quarantine rule, he/she is liable to punishment of imprisonment up to 6 months or fine.• Mistake of Law- Also called “Ignorentia juris non excusat” which means ignorance or mistake of law is not excusable. If a doctor carries out a prenatal test intending to abort a female foetus, that doctor cannot then avoid prosecution by saying that he was unaware of any such law which punishes such act.• Res Ipsa Loquitur- This demonstrates a situation of gross negligence or rashness such as blood transfusion made to the wrong patient, operating on the wrong patient, or on the wrong side of the body.
Supreme Court directives provided for theroadside accidents1. It is the duty of the medical practitioner to attend the injured and render medical aid instantaneously without waiting for procedural formalities unless the injured person or guardian (in case of minor) desires otherwise.2. The effort to save the person and preserve the life should be top priority of the doctor.3. The professional obligation of protecting life extends to every doctor, whether Govt. hospital or otherwise.
4. In case of better or specific assistance required, it is the duty of the treating doctor to see that the patient reaches the proper expert as early as possible.5. Non- compliance of any of these directives may invite prosecution under provisions of Motor Vehicle Act or IPC(7).
Other legal accountabilities that a doctor holds as per lawFurnishing copies of medical records to police, court or relatives when demanded, after having taken the consent of the patient.Preserving the documents of medico legal, controversial or complicated cases.Involving medical associations, medico-legal cells, voluntary organisations whenever legal problem arises.Following the legal procedures and provisions.
Not to issue fake or bogus certificates.No tampering or manipulation of documents. Doctors have no immunity against arrest for the various criminal acts as per the provisions of IPC but can avoid the arrest by adhering to the prescribed laws and provisions