He added that the medical council plans to is sue an advisory in this regard so that patients are not hoodwinked.
The pathologist based in east Delhi was allegedly issuing reports under his sig nature without supervising the conduction of pathology or biochemical tests or even visiting the pathology lab.”He is a repeat offender. We had debarred him in 2013 too,”Girish Tyagi, registrar of DMC, said. In 2013, the pathologist was offering consultation to 20-25 labs but visited only those labs that were near his house. DMC officials said he never visited labs that were very far. “In that case, he would see the slides online and give the report on phone.The labs had access to his scanned signature that was used to prepare the lab report,” an investigator said.
However, the pathologist claimed that his signature was being forged by certain labs and he was being defamed.
A senior member of the ethics committee of Medical Council of India (MCI), who did not want to be identified, said that this is not a one-off case.
“There are many lab technicians who are running standalone lab facilities in the country . They use scanned signature of pathologists to prepare report.This practice is more widespread in rural areas where there are not enough qualified pathologists,” he said.
An MCI official said many private labs do sync testing where they test the blood sample for one or two parameters and if they are in a normal range they report all parameters to be normal thus endangering the patient’s life.
Last year, the Maharashtra Medical Council (MMC) also removed the names of four pathologists who were found to be signing reports which they did not test or supervise.
A pathologist’s work involves testing blood, urine or tissue sample to make diagnosis of a particular infection or disease. Based on their report, the doctor decides the course of treatment. “A wrong or poorly analysed report can lead to wrong diagnosis. It is dangerous,” a doctor said. He added that patients should beware of small labs that offer a range of tests at a very low cost.