Eight newborns died in a span of 16 hours in a Jangipur sub-divisional hospital by Friday evening. All the infants were admitted to the sick new born care unit (SNCU) of the hospital. The incident also prompted an agitation by the guardians of the admitted children.
The age of the infants who died was between a few hours to two days.
"Six infants have died in this facility between Thursday midnight and 2 pm on Friday. The babies were suffering from asphyxia and other ailments," said the assistant chief medical officer of health (Jangipur), Bishnupada Bag.
Bag also claimed, "Not a single baby died due to negligence of the doctors. At present the neonatal ward is over crowded with babies referred from different peripheral hospitals. So we had to shift a good number of babies in the SNCU."
A senior doctor of the facility said newborns remain susceptible to infections, especially at this time of the year. Many of these infants were born outside the hospital and were brought there later.
However, many parents of the admitted children spoke of negligence of the authorities. Subrata Saha, who lost his child, told HT, "I requested the doctors of the facility to refer my son to Berhampore. But they didn't do that. As a result my son died today afternoon here."