Delhi High Court rejects plea mandating doctors to explain risks of prescribed drugs [20.5.2024]

The Delhi high court has dismissed a plea seeking to mandate doctors to explain all the possible risks and side effects of a prescribed drug to a patient saying that the legislature has elected to impose this duty on the manufacturer and the pharmacist.

“Since the legislature in its wisdom has elected to impose this duty on the manufacturer and the pharmacist, we do not find any ground for issuing a direction as prayed for in this PIL as it would amount to judicial legislation,” a bench of acting chief justice Manmohan and justice Manmeet PS Arora said in the May 15 order, released on Saturday.

The court was addressing a plea filed by one Jacob Vadakanchery, claiming to be a naturopath and social worker, which stated that prescribing a drug without specifying the possible side effects did not amount to obtaining valid consent of the patient.

The plea filed through advocate Prashant Bhushan claimed that though the Drugs and Cosmetic Act obligated manufacturers to communicate the potential risks and side effects to the consumers, there was a need to shift the obligation from the manufacturer and pharmacist to doctors.

20 May 2024