Twentyseven-year-old Vikas Jain would have bled to death on Sunday night.
With a broken right knee, the haemophilic travelled the length and breadth of the Capital along with his father in search of factor VIII, a blood protein needed to stop bleeding.
Around 10 pm on Sunday Vikas's scooter met with an accident. He is a resident of Shakurpur village near Punjabi Bagh in West Delhi.
Vikas’s blood lacks factor VIII, one of the proteins needed to form blood clots. Any delay in treatment could result in the patient bleeding to death.
“I ran from pillar to post, begging and pleading doctors to give me factor VIII but they didn’t have it in stock,” said Ram Kumar Jain, 44, Vikas’s father who sells cigarettes for a living.
But Society for Haemophilia Care in Dwarka came to their rescue.
“I got a called from 2 am and we gave him the life-saving drug free of cost, which otherwise costs about Rs 20,000 per dose,” said Vijay Kaul, executive director of the society.
“Delhi government hospitals are supposed to give it for free to all haemophilics, but they have been out of stock for over one month.”
Jain had first approached Lok Nayak Jai Prakash (LNJP) Hospital near India Gate and then he went to Deen Dayal Upadhyay (DDU) Hospital in extreme west of Delhi.
These two are the largest Delhi government hospitals marked for haemophilia treatment but they did not have factor VIII in stock on Sunday night.
“I am a poor man. I can’t afford to go to a private hospital. If these government hospitals don’t help us, where will the poor go?” said the helpless father, who claimed he earns less than Rs 100 a day.
Jain managed to get another dose of factor VIII for his son from Guru Tegh Bahadur Hospital in Shahdara in East Delhi. Vikas will need a dose every 12 hours.
When asked about the shortage of factor VIII in the hospital, Dr Anjan Prakash,
additional medical superintendent at LNJP, said, “I will not be able to comment right now as most departments shut by this time.”
“We can, however, check with our medical stores tomorrow.” HT had called them on Monday evening.
“Now that this has been brought to our knowledge, we will also ensure that factor VIII is made available not only to these two hospitals but also in more hospitals in the city,” said JP Singh, principal secretary, health (Delhi).