Lack of oxygen killed Gorakhpur kids, says report
The Indian Medical Association (IMA) on Friday said that its fact-finding team had found oxygen supply was interrupted for a short while on the night of August 10 at Baba Raghav Das (BRD) Medical College in Gorakhpur, leading to more deaths.
The IMA, which had called a suo motu inquiry into the deaths of over 70 children, said its team found out that the liquid oxygen supplier of the hospital had not been paid his dues since the last five months and cleanliness of the hospital was also unsatisfactory.
"Presence of dogs and rats in hospitals is not acceptable by any standards in the hospital premises. The hospital was handling these cases and other critically ill patients much more than its capacity. There is no facility in Gorakhpur and nearby districts to manage encephalitis," said the report by a three-member IMA team.
It also found that no alert was issued by the hospital administration regarding shortage of oxygen, addding that the treating doctors should have been alerted seven days before that a fresh oxygen supply would not be received.
According to the IMA, there are many other discrepancies in the health system of Uttar Pradesh such as ICUs in 10 districts of eastern Uttar Pradesh do not function because of lack of staff and other resources.
Over 70 children have died since August 7 at the hospital, allegedly due to shortage in oxygen supply. However, the reports were denied by Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, who said Encephalitis was the main cause along with other issues related to lack of cleanliness.
The inquiry committee comprised of Prof K.P. Kushwaha, former Principal and Head, Department of Pediatrics, Medical College Gorakhpur; Ashok Agarwal, National Vice President IMA and Dr B.B. Gupta, President IMA Gorakhpur Branch.
Two committees -- under Uttar Pradesh Chief Secretary Rajiv Kumar and one set up by the Union Health Ministry -- have been constituted to look into the matter.
The report for the Union Health Ministry, which had several recommendation to improve health care at the BRD hospital, was submitted on Wednesday.