Declared dead, Covid patient returns home after recovery
The district health department has formed a four-member committee to inquire the incident.Updated: Nov 22, 2020, 14:48 IST
Shibdas Banerjee,75, was infected by the coronavirus and subsequently declared dead and cremated on November 13. But then, Banerjee returned to his family at Birati in Bengal’s North 24 Parganas district on Friday night while preparations were on for his shraddh following Hindu rituals.
There is more to what is being described as faux pas and apathy by the staff at the Balaram Basu hospital in Khardah, located in the same district, where Banerjee was admitted on November 4. The state health department is conducting an inquiry into it.
The man who died and was cremated on November 13 by Banerjee’s son Sanjib was one Mohinimohan Mukherjee, 75, a resident of Khardah in the same district and a retired employee of the local civic body.
Mukherjee, too, was admitted at Balaram Basu hospital on November 4 but was transferred to the Covid-19 hospital at Barasat in North 24 Parganas on November 7, health department officials said. However, the medical records that were sent with him to the Barasat hospital belonged to Banerjee. The records got swapped and Banerjee remained under treatment as Mohinimohan Mukherjee till he recovered.
The truth came to light on Friday when the Balaram Basu hospital staff called up Mukherjee’s family to inform that he was ready for discharge as he had tested negative for Covid-19 after treatment.
“When I went to the hospital I was shocked to see a different person sitting in a wheelchair,” Mukherjee’s son Sandip told the local media. “The hospital authorities realized that they had made a faux pas and informed Banerjee’s family,” he added.
Banerjee’s family took him home late on Friday night.
The district health department has formed a four-member committee to inquire the incident. “This is indeed unfortunate. The inquiry committee’s report has been sent to the state health department and necessary action will be taken,” district chief medical officer of health (CMOH) Tapas Roy said while talking to the media.
Banerjee’s family did not talk to the media till Sunday afternoon.