HARARE – CIMAS Medical Aid Society is facing a Z$1million negligence lawsuit after health insurer staff allegedly distributed hair loss medication to a breast cancer patient, which caused him kidney failure.
The company dispensed the wrong drug to Caroline Nyika, creating more health complications for the patient.
The negligence prompted her to take legal action against CIMAS.
The case was first heard before a magistrate in Harare who found the company at fault.
The magistrate had ruled that Nyika’s health had deteriorated as a result of taking the wrong medicine because CIMAS “had acknowledged its responsibility that Nyika wanted to be treated for breast cancer and not for hair loss“.
“He rejected CIMAS’ claim that there were no side effects on the grounds that there was no evidence that the drug was safe for women, as it clearly stated that it should only be taken by men,” the court documents read.
“The trial court held CIMAS liable to pay damages for the pain and suffering Nyika suffered as a result of its negligence.”
The magistrate, however, condemned CIMAS to pay half of the sum it claimed with interest from the date of issue of the summons until the date of payment.
This was after considering she had been on the wrong “medication for only two weeks and was already chronically ill”.
Afflicted by the ruling, CIMAS then appealed to the High Court, complaining that the lower court had erred in determining that Nyika had suffered said health complications due to her existing chronic illness.
CIMAS argued that Nyika was not entitled to any compensation.
“The requirements alleged by the applicant were not established on the one hand, that she suffered financial damage, and on the other hand that this damage resulted from wrongful acts by CIMAS”, argued the insurer. -sickness.
CIMAS also argued that Nyika did not mention any kidney failure in her main testimony, but suffered from side effects including a swollen heart and a never-ending cough.
The company argued that dropping its plea weighed heavily against it and should not have won.
But appeals judges Fatima Maxwell and Amy Tsanga ruled it was shameful that CIMAS was trying to shirk responsibility when there was compelling evidence against the company.
“This ground of appeal shows that the appellant is desperately clinging to a straw in an effort to overturn the lower court’s decision,” the judges said.
“The appeal has no basis and it cannot succeed. The call fails…” – ZimLive