4-day-old girl dies after being shifted around Bareilly hospital for hours

Chief minister Yogi Adityanath ordered the suspension of Dr Kamlendra Swaroop Gupta, the chief medical superintendent (CMS) of the men’s wing of the hospital, on charges of negligence of duty.
Relatives of the 4-day-old girl who died at a Bareilly hospital.(HT Photo)
Relatives of the 4-day-old girl who died at a Bareilly hospital.(HT Photo)
Updated on Jun 20, 2019 11:28 PM IST
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Hindustan Times, Lucknow | ByChandan Kumar

A four-day-old infant, born prematurely, died after being denied immediate treatment and her parents were shunted from one building to another carrying her at the Maharana Pratap District Hospital in Bareilly, prompting Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi Adityanath to suspend a doctor and order proceedings against another for medical negligence.

Yogendra Pal, a farmer, said he and his wife had brought their daughter, Urvashi, to the outpatient department (OPD) in the men’s wing at the district hospital on Wednesday after she had taken ill and had trouble breathing. Urvashi was the first child of the couple.

Pal said the paediatrician, Dr SS Chauhan, examined his daughter and referred her to the women’s wing, some 500 metres away, which houses a sick newborn care unit (SNCU). “However, when I reached the SNCU, a doctor asked me to return to the OPD, after writing on the OPD slip: ‘Bed is not available, kindly admit in your side’,” he said.

When Yogendra returned to the OPD, Chauhan again directed him to the women’s wing. The baby died before she could be taken there.

Sushma, the girl’s mother, said she had to wander around the hospital for over three hours carrying her baby before the girl died. “She was not drinking milk. Doctors at the hospital asked us to go to the women’s ward. When I went there, they said there was no bed available there,” she said.

Chief minister Adityanath ordered the suspension of chief medical superintendent (CMS) of the men’s wing of the hospital, Dr Kamlendra Swaroop Gupta, for alleged negligence of duty and ordered departmental proceedings against Dr Alka Sharma, CMS of the women’s wing. “Any insensitivity by government officials will not be tolerated in #NewUP,” Adityanath tweeted.

CMS Gupta on Thursday said, “The paediatrician, Dr SS Chauhan, who examined the child in the OPD should have admitted her to the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU). We have four infant radiant warmer cots in the NICU, of which two were vacant on Wednesday.”

Radiant warmer cots are beds used to maintain the body temperature of newborns. Attempts to contact Dr Chauhan failed.

Defending the decision of her staff, Sharma said: “We have only four infant radiant warmer cots in the SNCU. On Wednesday, we already had six children admitted to the ward, leaving us with no place to admit more children.”

“On an average, 15 babies are delivered at our hospital [daily]. At least three of them are born premature and are required to be kept in the SNCU for about two weeks. We have to accommodate two children on a cot.”

She said the health department had provided 12 new infant radiant warmer cots to the SNCU in December last year. “The cots were used only for a few months and were taken back to Lucknow following technical faults on May 31 this year,” she said.

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