A pregnant woman who had gone to the Civil Hospital, Khanna, for delivery had to face a tough time after the hospital refused to admit her because she was HIV infected. The senior medical officer present there instead referred her to the Civil Hospital in Ludhiana where she delivered her baby on Monday evening.
Rashmi (name changed) later filed a complaint about the incident with the city civil surgeon on Tuesday, saying she was registered under the Prevention of Parent to Child Transmission project by an outreach worker, Amandeep Kaur.
“Earlier also, gynaecologists at the Khanna hospital refused to treat me when I went there for regular checkups during my seven-month pregnancy. I then discussed the matter with Amandeep who talked to Dr Uggar Singh Sooch, an AIDS control district programme officer, and it was after his intervention did the gynecologist agree to conduct a checkup,” said Rashmi.
Amandeep, who also submitted a complaint regarding the issue to the Prevention of Parent to Child Transmission (PPCT) project coordinator, Ludhiana, said: “On Monday when I accompanied the patient to the Khanna hospital for delivery, the senior medical officer, instead of admitting her, referred her to the Rajindra Hospital in Patiala and then to the Civil Hospital in Ludhiana.”
Meanwhile, Dr Kotnis Dhingra, district coordinator of the Prevention of Parent to Child Transmission project, said: “This isn’t the first time when we’ve come across such a situation. Most doctors in the city reject patients if they are HIV positive. I wish the authorities concerned will look into the matter.”
When contacted, Dr Manohar Lal, senior medical officer at the Civil Hospital, Khanna, said: “The patient, who had come from Fatehgarh Sahib, had not been treated earlier at our hospital and it was only after tests were conducted on her that doctors came to know she was HIV infected. However, the staff gynecologist was on leave that day and the surgeon told me that she couldn’t deal with the patient as she was having some complications. I then referred her first to the Patiala hospital and later to the Ludhiana Civil Hospital on her request.”
However, Sooch maintained doctors at the Civil Hospital in Khanna had refused to treat the patient.
“She was later operated upon at the Civil Hospital in Ludhiana where doctors delivered a healthy baby,” he added.