Mumbra teen dies of liver disease as five hospitals refuse to admit herUpdated: May 21, 2020 00:24 IST
A 13-year-old girl from Mumbra, who was suffering from a liver disease, died on Tuesday night after she could not get timely medical help as five hospitals turned her away . The Thane Municipal Corporation (TMC) has initiated an inquiry.
Nafiza Shaikh was suffering from a chronic liver disease in which fluid accumulates in the stomach, and gradually makes it difficult to breathe. The fluid has to be extracted if she experienced pain in her stomach.
Her father, Hasibur Rehman Shaikh, 60, took her to five hospitals, but they refused to admit her. As he could not arrange for transport, he carried his daughter from one hospital to another.
“She had this ailment for a month. We first took her to our doctor’s clinic at Amrut Nagar. But, the doctor had insufficient staff and did not have the equipment to treat my daughter. He wrote a note explaining the situation and suggested a few hospitals where I could seek medication,” said Shaikh, a cleric.
“I left the clinic with the doctor’s note around 3pm. As I was about to reach one hospital at 8pm, my daughter’s voice was becoming feeble. I was continuously talking to her to ensure she was conscious. But, I faced the same rejection at that hospital,” said Shaikh.
Outside the hospital, some passers-by noticed Shaikh carrying his daughter and contacted a social worker. “He helped my daughter get admission to the hospital by 10pm. But, within an hour, she died. It was seven long hours till we got medical help,” said Shaikh.
Shaikh said that he forgot his daughter’s medical file in the TMC office when he went to get her death certificate as he got into an argument with one of the staffers, so he does not know the exact name of the disease.
The hospital did not answer the calls.
Nafisa was the youngest among Shaikh’s four children.
Manish Joshi, deputy municipal commissioner, said, “The health department has initiated an inquiry. This is an unfortunate incident. A special meeting will be held with all private hospital officials on Thursday to discuss the issue. Mumbra is facing a dearth of good private hospitals. Especially during a pandemic, one has to provide help and medical attention to everyone without any bias. As soon as the inquiry report comes, necessary action will be taken.”
Doctors said the disease is not life-threatening if timely treatment is given.
A general practitioner, Dr Mohiduddin Raut, said, “On the basis of Nafiza’s sonography and some blood reports, it shows she was suffering from a liver disease, but it was not life- threatening. Most private hospitals are not admitting patients.”