Troubled Gorakhpur Hospital Says 217 Children Died in August Alone – Yogi Says Media Blame Govt for Small Issues
Death continues to haunt BRD Medical College in Gorakhpur that came under fire earlier this month after dozens of babies died within two days.
Dr. P.K. Singh, the head of the BRD Medical College in Gorakhpur city, said Wednesday that at least 217 children died there in August alone due to a variety of reasons including an annual encephalitis outbreak. Singh added that 42 children have died in the last 48 hours. Seven of the deaths were from encephalitis while the others were attributed to other medical complications.
The hospital found itself in the middle of a media storm earlier this month when 33 children died there Aug. 10 and 11 around the same time as a disruption in the oxygen supply. A team of experts from New Delhi later said that the interruption was not responsible for the deaths, but there was fury in India over how the hospital let oxygen run out.
“Increase in fatality is because of seasonal infection,” Singh said, explaining the deaths. “There is no shortage of oxygen or medicine in the hospital. Children died only because of medical complication not because of medical negligence.” However, a point to ponder here is, if the deaths are not because of negligence, then why the principal of the college, two doctors and more than 7 staffs were suspended. The chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh has ordered to register criminal case not only against them but also the company which supplies oxygen to that hospital.
The city is 250 kilometers (155 miles) southeast of Lucknow, state capital of Uttar Pradesh.
Medical experts say the government continues to be taken by surprise and unprepared for what is now an annual cycle of disease and death.
“Any layman can tell you that in view of flooding, the cases of vector-borne diseases are likely to go up. But what shocks me is that the administration has taken no preventive step,” said Dr. R.N. Singh, a local expert who has worked with encephalitis patients for years. “There is no attempt to prevent spread of communicative diseases.”
Encephalitis has killed more than 4,000 children and sickened nearly 25,000 since 2010 in Uttar Pradesh. Some of the children who died had the brain-swelling condition.
Acute encephalitis syndrome causes patients to suffer from fever, vomiting, headaches and brain function issues such as confusion, trouble speaking and coma along with seizures. The condition can leave surviving children paralyzed and mentally impaired.
However, the Chief minister of Uttar Pradesh is undeterred, the Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath on Wednesday said that media keeps on blaming government for small issues.
While speaking after inaugurating the ‘Make in UP’ scheme startup journey, Adityanath also said that day is not far when parents will start leaving their own children with the Government itself.”
CM Yogi also said that when people get sick they go to a street doctor who in turn gives them treatment for some other disease.