Boy died as doctor 'refused' treatment, say orgs; hospital clarifies

    01-Aug-2020
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IMPHAL, Aug 1
A 3-year-old boy who was rushed to the Mayang Imphal Primary Health Centre after drowning has succumbed as a doctor denied treatment, alleged organisations yesterday.
Manipur Muslim Welfare Organisation and Youth Development Committee in separate statements said that the boy identified as Md Himmat, son of Md Helaluddin of Santhel Mamang Leikai, was evacuated to Mayang Imphal Primary Health Centre after drowning at around 10 yesterday morning. However, a lady doctor who was stationed at the health centre allegedly denied immediate medical attention and refused treatment.
Afterwards, the child was evacuated to Mother's Care Children Hospital at Sagolband Moirang Leirak, Imphal. The doctors and staff at the hospital tried their best but couldn't save the child. The child was declared dead at around 11.45 am yesterday, said Youth Development Committee, Mayang Imphal.
Asserting that the child could have been saved if only the lady doctor at Mayang Imphal PHC had given the first aid and immediate medical attention, the committee demanded that the doctor be held responsible for the death of the child.
The lady doctor, who allegedly disregarded her duty as a healthcare professional, should be suspended and held responsible. Proper enquiry should be conducted and legal actions should be taken up against her, said the organisations.
Meanwhile, the authorities of the Mayang Imphal Primary Health Centre today clarified claiming that the doctor did not deny treatment  but ensured the patient's safety from possible COVID-19 infection and gave the best alternate advice to the patient party to save the boy.
As the doctor had attended a suspected COVID-19 case earlier at around 9.30 am yesterday, she and the staff needed time to sanitise themselves before administering first aid and treatment to the child. The lady doctor had also explained the situation to the patient party and advised them to hurry the child to the next nearest hospital to save time as sanitising and wearing PPE take time. Attending the child without sanitising and wearing PPE could have exposed the virus to the child and infected him.
Meanwhile, the suspected COVID-19 case whom the doctor attended earlier, who is identified as a police personnel,  has also tested positive for the virus at RIMS, said the hospital authorities in the statement.
The hospital authorities also claimed that the video that has gone viral on social media doesn't depict the part where the PHC staff were explaining about the risk of COVID-19 infection in light of the earlier exposure.
The turn of events is indeed unfortunate. The staff had only tried their best to ensure the safety of the patient and those who brought him in, the statement said.