A doctor facing charges of negligence has lost his second attempt in court to block the medical board from punishing him for overdosing a one-year-old epileptic baby.
Paediatric neurologist Donald Oyatsi wanted the Court of Appeal to overturn the dismissal by the High Court of a case in which he sought to quash the decision of the council of the Kenya Medical Practitioners and Dentists Board (KMPDB) to punish him.
He wanted the appellate court to issue a stay order pending the hearing and determination of his appeal against the ruling.
While arguing that the appeal raises serious and weighty issues, Dr Oyatsi said the board’s disciplinary and ethics committee did not accord him a fair hearing and disregarded his evidence.
The neurologist said the High Court erred by upholding the disputed ruling dated February 4, 2020 in which he was directed to enter into mediation with the patient’s parent with a view of compensation and additionally to pay a fine of Sh500,000. But the appeals court dismissed his application, saying, it lacked merit.
The three-judge bench of justices Daniel Musinga, Patrick Kiage and Gatembu Kairu found that although the appeal may be arguable based on the grounds raised, they were not convinced it would be rendered nugatory if order of stay was not granted.
“The applicant has failed to establish how he will be harmed if the injunction is not granted,” ruled the judges. They said the dismissal order cannot be stayed as it cannot be executed nor enforced.
According to court papers, Dr Oyatsi is among the few specialists in paediatric neurology who treat patients with acute epilepsy and refractory seizures.
It is on the strength of this that a parent, AK, the mother of the minor named WK, sought his expertise to treat her daughter, who was diagnosed with developmental delay as a result of brain damage at the age of seven months. During the infant’s treatment, the mother noticed that her seizures were progressively getting worse in spite of the medication.
She sought further treatment for WK at the Children’s Hospital of Orange County (CHOC) in California in the United States of America (USA).
While there, the medicines prescribed for WK by Dr Oyatsi were immediately withdrawn and the seizures stopped.