A pregnant woman died after a 13-hour hospital hunt failed to find her a bed in any hospital

NHRC notice to UP govt over ‘non-treatment’ of two pregnant women

Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath. File photo

Shahira Naim

Tribune News Service

Lucknow, June 8

Taking suo moto cognisance of media reports, the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) on Monday issued a notice to Uttar Pradesh Chief Secretary and called for a detailed report in the case of alleged medical apathy towards two pregnant women by various government and private hospitals in Gautama Buddha Nagar.

The commission has sought to know from the UP government if it has issued any Standard Operating Procedures to hospitals to deal with the current scenario.

“If yes, all concerned shall be asked for strict compliance so that lives of people coming to hospitals in emergency for treatment of illnesses other than Covid-19 could also be saved,” said the NHRC press statement.

NHRC has given the Uttar Pradesh government four weeks to file a report, including the action taken against the delinquent doctors and officials.

According to media reports, an eight-month pregnant woman died in G B Nagar when after a frantic 13-hour hospital hunt she failed to find a bed in any hospital. The 30-year old victim was taken to at least eight hospitals, including government-run facilities, by her husband before she died in the ambulance, just outside a health facility in Greater Noida on June 5.

Neelam, 30, and her husband Vijender Singh, 30, knocked the doors of eight hospitals, including government ones, before she died in the ambulance outside a facility in Greater Noida on Friday, the family told PTI.

Taking note of the death and the claim, the Gautam Buddh Nagar district administration ordered an inquiry into the matter.

A resident of Khoda colony on the Noida-Ghaziabad border, Neelam was eight months pregnant and undergoing treatment at Shivalik Hospital here, a private facility, for pregnancy-related complications, her husband said.

On Friday, the hospital refused to admit her and then they were forced to run from one facility to another, he added.

“We first went to the ESI hospital. Thereafter, we went to a hospital in Sector 30 (the Child PGI), from there we went to the Sharda Hospital and then to the Government Institute of Medical Sciences (GIMS) in Greater Noida. But all refused to admit her,” the man is seen alleging in a video circulating on social media.

He said the family also tried to get admission in the private facility Jaypee, Fortis Hospital in Gautam Buddh Nagar and Max in Vaishali, Ghaziabad, but were allegedly told that no beds were available.

“Kul mila ke humari ambulance mein hi death ho gayi (ultimately, she died in the ambulance). Finally, we got to the GIMS where she was put on a ventilator but it was too late,” he said.

Gautam Buddh Nagar District Magistrate Suhas L Y ordered a probe into the episode.

“Additional DM Munindra Nath Upadhyay and Chief Medical Officer Deepak Ohri will probe the matter. The DM has instructed them to immediately carry out a probe and take action,” an official statement said.

This is at least the second instance within a fortnight when a life has been lost in Gautam Buddh Nagar due to unavailability of timely medical treatment.

On the night of 25 May, a newborn child had died due to lack of medical support as his father kept running from one hospital to another between Greater Noida and Noida.

The district administration had carried out a probe in that matter too and pinned the fault on two private hospitals for alleged negligence.

In the second incident in Noida on Monday, a 26-year old woman was allegedly refused admission by the District Hospital in Sector 30 following which she delivered a stillborn baby on the pavement outside the hospital.

The family of the woman alleged that had she received timely treatment the baby could have survived.

NHRC observed that if the contents of the news reports were true, they raise a serious issue of violation of human rights as the state authorities have failed to ensure the right to life and medical care of its citizens. 

“It is understood that amid spread of Covid-19 virus the hospitals are receiving a very large number of patients and there is shortage of infrastructure but refusing to attend to patients by the hospitals is a matter of grave concern,” said the NHRC spokesperson.  

The NHRC has also sent copies of the press clippings to the Secretary, Union Ministry of Health & Family Welfare, to look into the matter and issue specific instructions to all the states and UTs so that people coming to the hospitals in cases of emergency for treatment of illness other than Covid-19 are not denied medical care and critical support.

According to the NHRC spokespersons, in the case of the death of the 30-year-old pregnant woman, she was undergoing treatment for pregnancy related complications at a private facility called Shivalik Hospital. However, when the family approached the hospital to get her admitted, they refused forcing the husband to take her from one hospital to another.

The husband of the victim has complained that he requested the ESI Hospital, the Child PGI at Sector 30, Sharda Hospital and Government Institute of Medical Sciences, Greater Noida, but all of them allegedly turned them away.

He also tried to get her admitted in several private hospitals, including Jaypee, Fortis and Max, Vaishali, but all allegedly told him that there were no beds available.

The deceased’s husband has stated that finally he could get her admitted to GIMS Hospital where she was put on a ventilator but it was too late. The District Magistrate of Gautama Buddha Nagar district has reportedly ordered an inquiry into the matter.

As per media reports, in the second incident on Monday the family had brought the pregnant woman to the Noida district hospital in an auto-rickshaw. When the hospital refused to attend to the patient the family tried to arrange an ambulance but in the meantime, the woman delivered a stillborn girl on the pavement.

courtesy The Tribune