Newborn dies as father made to take him to 3 govt hospitalsUpdated: May 26, 2020 23:07 IST
At a time when Uttar Pradesh officials and the district administration of Gautam Budh Nagar are daily claiming that their health care system is geared up to tackle any emergency, a newborn boy died in his father’s arms on Tuesday even as the desperate man was made to go from one government hospital to another in an effort to get treatment for his child.
The distraught father said he had to wait for two hours for an ambulance to arrive and was made to go to three government hospitals with the sick baby. The newborn was finally declared dead at the third hospital, the Child PGI in Sector 30, on Tuesday morning.
He later made a video narrating his ordeal, while returning home with the body of his child tied to his motorbike.
The administration took the cognizance of the matter and said a team comprising two doctors will now look into it.
According to Prem Kumar, a resident of Sector 36, Noida, his wife delivered a boy at a private hospital at 9.30pm on Monday. However, due to certain medical complications, the child was later referred to another hospital. The father and his uncle rushed to the neighbouring speciality hospital where the child was kept on life support, but Kumar said since he could not afford the expenses of that hospital, he called for an ambulance to go to the Dadri community health centre.
“After multiple calls, even to the police, the ambulance arrived about two hours later. We took the child off the life support only to find that the ambulance did not have a functional oxygen cylinder on board. We somehow managed to reach Dadri CHC by midnight. The staff there refused to tend to my child and asked me to go to the government hospital in Noida,” Kumar said.
“Upon reaching the Noida government hospital in Sector 30, the staff asked me to take the baby to the nearby Child PGI. But there was no one there to treat the baby and he was declared dead in the morning,” Kumar said.
He said while the ambulance had an oxygen cylinder, it did not have the device to control the flow. “So when Dadri CHC turned us away, we had to make a detour to a private hospital and borrow the device. However, that device also did not work,” Kumar said.
“At Child PGI, too, they did not tend to my baby for a long time and asked us to wait. A staffer placed my child on a stretcher and left. Running out of patience, I knocked on different cabins and, in one of them, we saw a few people sitting with stethoscopes around their neck. We requested them to help us. One of them got up and put the stethoscope on the baby’s chest and said he was dead. They then gave us a death certificate,” Kumar said.
Kumar, who works at a private company in Greater Noida, said owing to the nationwide lockdown, he hadn’t got his salary for the past three months and hence could not afford the private hospital treatment costs. He sad he dialled all the health department helpline numbers he could find on the internet and the police’s helpline number too after the ambulance took a long time to arrive. “If I had ₹25,000, I could have got my son treated at a private hospital. We paid ₹8,000 to the hospital for a few hours of support,” he said.
A comment could not be obtain from Gautam Budh Nagar chief medical officer (CMO) Dr Deepak Ohri, who went to a meeting and later could not be reached despite numerous attempts. Subdivisional Magistrate, Dadri, Rajiv Rai also could not be reached despite repeated attempts. The district magistrate’s office when reached, said the DM is yet to comment on the incident.
“CMO Ohri has taken the cognizance of the incident related to the death of a child due to medical negligence. Realising the gravity of the situation, a probe committee comprising district surveillance officer Dr Sunil Doherey and additional chief medical officer Dr Sanjeev Mangalik has been formed. Strict action will be taken against those responsible,” said district information officer Rakesh Chauhan in a statement .