A fault in the oxygen-supply equipment in the ICU of one of Delhi government’s biggest trauma facilities, which also caters to neighbouring states, left four patients dead early Tuesday, with the families accusing Sushrut Trauma Centre of negligence.
Three of the dead were road-accident victims while the fourth person was being treated for poisoning. They were among the five patients on ventilator support — which aids breathing —at the trauma centre, the biggest in north Delhi. The fifth patient, Vikram Singh, 32, is stable.
Sushrut Trauma Centre gets 35-40 road-accident victims every day from the city’s north, Haryana and western Uttar Pradesh, largely due to its proximity to the Outer Ring Road, ISBT and NH-1. Alleging negligence, distraught family members protested at the hospital and filed a police complaint.
The hospital was conducting an investigation and would submit a report, said Sindhu Pillai, deputy commissioner of police (north district).
“An FIR will be registered only after we get the enquiry report,” Pillai said.
But, the blame game has begun. Delhi health minister AK Walia said the facility was outsourced to a private company that was responsible for the supply and maintaining the oxygen pressure.
"Till now, it looks like there was a fault in the pipeline but we will know it for sure after a report is submitted. If there is proven negligence, an FIR will be filed," said Walia.
The minister set up a three-member committee, led by special secretary (health) SB Shashank, to look into the cause of deaths and submit a report on Friday.
He has also called an emergency meeting on Wednesday to review all outsourced services in government hospitals.