Nothing to Hide; But, Apollo didn’t share details of Jayalalithaa’s treatment

J Jayalalithaa

Chennai, Feb 24: Tamil Nadu government has informed in the Madras High Court that former CM J Jayalalithaa died despite the best efforts made to retain her health and that it would be against the medical proffession ethics to reveal the treatment history of a patient to public.

Health and Family Welfare Department principal secretary,J Radhakrishnan,  made the submissions on a PIL petition moved by PA Joseph, an AIADMK cadre, seeking a probe into the “mysterious” death of former chief minister J Jayalalithaa.

PA Joseph, in his Public Interest Litigation demanded to the court to appoint a committee comprising retired Supreme Court judges to probe the former CM’s death.

When the Public Interest Litigation plea came up for hearing on yesterday, Chennai Apollo Hospitals, another respondent to the litigation, stated that all the information released by the hospital pertaining to the treatment of Jayalalithaa was done as per her wishes.

“Jayalalithaa had expressed her desire that no photographs be released from hospital, and that any information released about her medical treatment should highlight the positive aspects such as potential recovery and discharge from the Apollo hospital,” S M Mohan Kumar, legal manager, Chennai Apollo Hospitals, said.

Mohan Kumar asserted that all the information released by the Apollo hospitals was done only on the request of the Tamil Nadu State government in the interest of maintaining public order and minimizing speculation and rumours.

“As to the complete details of the treatment provided to Jayalalithaa,  With reference to the provision of the (Professional Conduct, Etiquette and Ethics) Regulations, 2002, the Medical Council Of India, Code of Ethics, and Joint Commission International, an independent accreditation agency for hospitals worldwide, the hospital is bound to maintain the privacy preferences of each patient.”

-Mr. SM Mohan Kumar, Legal Manager, Apollo Hospitals

Arguing  that the petitioner, Mr Joseph,  has based most of his contentions on hearsay and not on facts, Dr. Radhakrishnan also said that the medical practitioners, as part of their duty, are not bound to reveal details related to their patients.

After Recording the submissions, the First Bench of Acting Chief Justice Huluvadi G. Ramesh and Justice R. Mahadevan adjourned the PIL to March 13th  for the Central government to file its submissions.

Yesterday the Apollo Hospital management responded to the PIL and the hospital, in its response, stated that if the High Court demand they were ready to submit the full details of treatment given to Jayalalithaa.

“It is according to the law of the MCA (Ministry of Corporate Affairs) we did not reveal any details of the patient,” the hospital stated.