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An investigation was conducted by the three-member panel constituted by Moga Civil Surgeon has accused senior gynecologist Dr Manish Gupta and her husband, senior pediatrician Dr Ashish Aggarwal, for remaining absent from emergency duty on the night a woman gave birth on the floor at Dr Mathra Das Pahwa Civil Hospital.
The inquiry report mentions that the baby, who later died, was not properly cared even after being delivered on the floor on the intervening night of January 8 and 9. It also says that both the doctors did not even check the baby or mother even after coming late next morning and went straight to their respective OPD’s.
The panel constituting Assistant Civil Surgeon Dr Jaswant Singh and others, has submitted the report to Moga Civil Surgeon Dr Harinder Pal Singh, on the basis of which, the latter has written to Director Health asking for ‘strictest action’ against both the doctors. Sources said that final decision will be taken by Punjab Health Minister Balbir Singh Sidhu.
A patient Amandeep Kaur from village Bajeke had delivered a baby boy on hospital floor after staff nurse on-duty allegedly refused to take her inside labour room stating that there was still time for her delivery. The newborn baby died after six days, on January 15, at Guru Gobind Singh Medical College and Hospital.
A senior official who was part of the investigation process, said to The Indian Express that the enquiry has found both the doctors — Dr Manisha Gupta (gynecologist) and Dr Ashish Aggarwal (pediatrician) — were absent from their emergency duty and they did not come to the hospital despite repeated calls from the staff nurse even after the baby was delivered on floor. The staff nurse on duty has provided with call records from her phone which showed that she called both doctors at least six times to inform that baby was unwell but they did not come till next morning.
The doctors kept instructing her on phone and even after they came on duty next morning around 9 am, they did not check the baby or the mother, went directly to their OPD and it was only after the next pediatrician on duty — Dr Dalbir Kaur Gaba — came then the baby was shifted to Sick Neonatal Care Unit (SNCU) and later was referred to Faridkot as his condition was deteriorated. The baby was suffering from hypothermia and pneumonia by then.
In the report, the call records from nurse’s phone and CCTV clips showing baby’s birth on floor, have been attached. A source sharing in to probe details, said that the temperature inside mother’s womb is around 35 to 37 degree Celsius and the baby was born on the cold night at 4 degree Celsius. The temperatures inside labor rooms are maintained at more than 30 degree Celsius because transition from womb to outside world is not easy for the newborns. CCTV clips have shown that baby was delivered outside on floor and then the nurse, Gagandeep Kaur, then rushed, detached umbilical cord there and immediately took baby inside and tried to warm him up but it was very cold. The baby could not survive because delivery happened in biting cold conditions and the bigger blunder was that both doctors despite being informed that baby was not well did not bother to come and kept instructing staff nurse on phone.
The mother, Amandeep Kaur, said that no doctor attended her or her baby till 9 am after delivery at around 5 am. Firstly, she kept screaming in pain and wasn’t taken inside labor room and then later, even after baby was unwell, no senior doctor came to check him. When the baby started to have breathing trouble, they asked the staff to check him but nothing was done till 9 am or so.
Moga Civil Surgeon Dr Harinder Pal Singh told The Indian Express that based on the investigation report, he has written to Director Health for “strictest and appropriate action against both the doctors”. They were on emergency duty from 8 pm till 9 am next morning but did not reach despite staff calling them multiple times to inform that baby was not well.
Punjab health minister Balbir Singh Sidhu said that he is yet to go through the findings of the report and would be able to say anything only on Tuesday. The Indian Express tried to contact Dr Ashish Aggarwal and Dr Manisha Gupta, but both did not respond to calls and messages.
Source: The Indian Express