Mistaken identities and a matter of life and death at GTB hospital | delhi | Hindustan Times
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Mistaken identities and a matter of life and death at GTB hospital

delhi Updated: Jan 05, 2009 00:10 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times
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Thanks to Guru Tegh Bahadur Hospital, Suraj Kumar, 60, came back from the dead on Sunday afternoon.

Suraj’s family was handed over a corpse at 5.30 am by the GTB Hospital authorities, which they cremated. They were, however, informed by the hospital authorities later that the body they had cremated was that of another patient Swaraj Kumar, 60, who was in the same ward as Suraj.

The confusion came to light when Swaraj’s family came to the ward in the morning at about 9 am. When the family enquired, the doctor reportedly said he was recovering and pointed towards Suraj. “When I told the doctor that he was not my patient, the doctors carelessly told me, then he must have been the one who died in the morning,” said Pawan Kumar, Swaraj’s relative.

That’s when the family sensed that there was something wrong. “Shocked at the casual way of remark, we reached the medical superintendent’s office seeking an explanation. They asked us to wait,” he said.

Hospital sources said the authorities took almost five-six hours to find out the whereabouts of Swaraj, before they finally admitted to the family that there had been some confusion.

Not admitting the hospital’s mistake, Dr P.C. Dixit, medical superintendent at the hospital, said, “There was a bit of misunderstanding, which was sorted out by the two families. Suraj’s family admitted that they had taken the wrong body and have given it to us in written. I am unsure about the role of the doctors yet.”

Dr Dixit said he has asked for a report into the incident. “Hopefully, we will get a report on Monday as we will be better staffed,” he said.