Delhi HC raps LNJP Hospital for delaying report of woman seeking MTP of abnormal foetus

The Delhi High Court on Monday hauled up the Lok Nayak Jai Prakash Narayan (LNJP) Hospital for delaying the medical examination of a married woman who has sought termination of her 33-week foetus suffering from cerebral abnormalities.

Justice Pratibha M. Singh on Friday had asked the medical board of the hospital to examine the woman the same day and submit a report by December 5. “Considering the gestational period, the medical board of LNJP hospital is directed to conduct a medical examination of the petitioner today itself and submit a report to this court,” she had said.

However, the court was informed by the woman’s counsel that she is yet to be examined. The counsel representing the hospital submitted that as the woman is on her third trimester with certain complications involved, the medical board also wanted the neurologist to be there in the team.

“It is due to administrative reasons and election duty that it got delayed, but the report will be ready by tomorrow,” the LNJP counsel added.

Justice Singh directed the hospital to submit the report by 1 p.m. and said that she will take up the matter at 2.30 p.m. “Tell the doctors concerned if they don’t do it, at 2.30 p.m., they should be present in the court,” she added.

Earlier, the 26-year-old woman mentioned in the petition that a cerebral abnormality was found in the foetus on November 12 and was confirmed by another ultrasound conducted at a private facility two days later.

However, she had undergone various ultrasounds since she conceived. The counsel for the petitioner submitted that termination can be permitted in such cases under Sections 3(2B) and 3(2D) of the Medical Termination of Pregnancy (MTP) Act. “Since the Guru Teg Bahadur Hospital does not have a medical board for MTP cases, the foetus can be examined by the medical board of LNJP Hospital,” the counsel submitted.

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