The date: May 3, 2009. The hospital: Max Healthcare, Pitampura. It was a caesarean delivery — nothing abnormal.
The mother, delighted as she held the baby in her arms, had already started dreaming of her son’s future.
But in what the family calls the tragic fallout of medical negligence, Nitika Manchanda — the mother —died in the hospital at 12.30 p.m. on May 5.
The Manchandas filed a first information report (FIR) at the Saraswati Vihar police station, claiming negligence of the hospital staff had caused Nitika’s death. They have the hospital records — night charts prepared by the nurse on duty — to back their allegations.
“We can’t get our daughter back, but we don’t want any one else to go through the same fate,” Nitika’s father S. P. Manchanda says.
He has also filed a complaint against Max Hospital for ‘negligence and deficiency of services’ at the Indian Consumer Complaints Forum.
The hospital reports — copies of which are with HT — show Nitika’s condition was normal after the delivery. She had no medical history or abnormality of any kind. Her final ultrasound, which was conducted on April 25, was also normal.
At about 10 p.m. on May 4, Nitika complained of backache, but no doctor was available to diagnose the cause.
She was allegedly made to pop several painkillers and sedatives based on telephonic advice alone.
By 2 a.m., she had started
vomiting and developed tenderness in the lower back.
The night chart report prepared by the nurse on duty (a copy of which is with HT) says a consulting physician came at 7 a.m. on May 5.
By then, Nitika was experiencing “intolerable pain”. The family alleged the staff took 45 minutes to shift her to the post-operative care.
“By then, it was too late. I knew it was all over,” Manchanda says.
The hospital authorities declined to comment on the case, saying the matter was before the Delhi Medical Council and that the police were also investigating the matter.