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H1N1 Patient on Ventilator Dies During Power Cut

by Julia Samuel on March 3, 2015 at 10:54 AM
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H1N1 Patient on Ventilator Dies During Power Cut

The death of a 53-year-old H1N1 patient in Rajiv Gandhi Institute of Chest Diseases (RGICD) supposedly during a power cut raised concerns on the facilities available in the hospital.

Though the hospital authorities have claimed that there was no outage and termed the death as a coincidence as no other patient was affected, the family members of the deceased seek to register a complaint.


Relatives of B G Ganesh, protested against the hospital that the ventilator in the MICU stopped working during a power cut, resulting in his death. His wife Uma said, "I want to file a complaint with police in sometime. I could not save my husband due to lack of facilities in the hospital."

Dr Shashidar Buggi, director, RGICD, said, "It was just coincidence. He was suffering from bilateral pneumonia and his condition was worsening from Saturday afternoon. When all other blocks had power, only the Men's ICU and kitchen block didn't have power for some time. But the ventilator had battery. I even insisted that he be shifted to the surgical ICU located close to the MICU. The death was not due to power cut. There was no power cut, it was only a short circuit. There were other patients too, and none of them was affected."

Power hitches faced by government hospitals has raised concerns followed by the patient's death. The other hospitals were enquired about their alternative during a power cut and how they manage the power situation.

Dr. Gangadhar Belavadi, medical superintendent of Vanivilas hospital, said they depend on two generators in case of a snag. "We don't even get to know if there is a power cut, as the supply is always backed by a generator. We have 16 ventilators in the hospital, including 7 in the neonatal ICU. I am not aware of the express line facility that gives uninterrupted power supply to hospitals. I will check on that," he said.

Dr. C N Manjunath, director of Sri Jayadeva Institute of Cardiovascular Sciences and Research, said, "Despite having an express line, we have two 850 kilowatt generators. When there is a complete power shutdown, even the express line connectivity fails, so we have these two generators."

The government has constituted a committee headed by medical education director Dr. S S Hasroor to probe into the allegations of mishandling of the patient. Health and family welfare minister U T Khader said, "The death shocked me. There seems to have been some lapses and we have ordered an enquiry. We will initiate stringent action if there are any lapses."

Source: Medindia


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