The Maternity and Child Care Hospital in South Kashmir’s Anantnag has plunged into a crisis and panic after a 35-year-old pregnant woman died here and her test results confirmed that she was Covid-19 positive.
The doctors and paramedical staff who attended the patient have been asked to quarantine themselves. However, the doctors said there was a shortage of Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) and there are no isolation ward facilities in the hospital for the Covid-19 suspects or patients.
According to the doctors, the pregnant lady from Kharpora Kokernag area of Anantnag was admitted in the hospital on Saturday at 8:30 a.m. diagnosed as advanced labour with twin pregnancy. She delivered first stillbirth baby immediately as a normal delivery. Her second baby was also stillbirth after an hour. Later, she was shifted to a ward having common entry.
“This patient had come from the Covid-19 Red Zone and but we didn’t know it. She had come on her own. She was about to deliver. We took it as an emergency case and USG was not done. Two doctors and a consultant assisted her,” said a doctor.
The patient died few hours later and after her death, her samples were taken and she was handed over to her family.
What is more worrying that whne her family gave her a proper burial, several neighbours and relatives gathered to grieve for the deceased. After her test results showed she was Coronavirus positive, it has worried those who attended her funeral and raised the question as to why was her body handed over to the family even when her test results were awaited.
The family members of the deceased woman said that hospital staff didn’t take care of the patient when they heard she came from a Red Zone. “They didn’t even examine her initially,” said a family member.
The family members said she was kept in isolation after her delivery and not treated well. They alleged she died of a heart attack in the isolation.
The hospital functions from an old dilapidated building at congested Sherbagh in old town Anantnag and conducts around 30 caesareans a day. Now, the doctors insist every admission in the hospital be considered as Covid-19 positive and they should be given equipment to deal with patients accordingly.
The district administration till Sunday evening had not made it clear whether the patient died of the Covid-19 or not. A top official of the district ruled out death of the lady due to the Covid-19 and instead hinted toward the alleged negligence on part of the hospital.
“The unfortunate death of a pregnant woman yesterday (Sunday) at MCH Anantnag can’t be attributed to COVID-19, though samples taken post her death have reported positive. The alleged negligence on part of maternity hospital is being inquired into!,” tweeted Syed Yasir, additional commissioner of the region.
Principal of the Government Medical College Anantnag Dr. Showkat Jeelani said the patient had come to hospital on her own and doctors came to know about it after her admission. “There was no prior communication that the lady is from the Red Zone area. We came to know about it later,” Jeelani said. He added only an inquiry would reveal circumstances leading to her death.
"In case she has tested positive, then she died of the Covid -19," he added.