Investigate alleged doctors’ negligence in death of newborn

Yesterday, this newspaper carried a sad story about a newborn that died in hospital after falling off a cot under the care of medical staff.

Yesterday, this newspaper carried a sad story about a newborn that died in hospital after falling off a cot under the care of medical staff.

The bereaved parents blame the tragic loss of their two-day old kid on the negligence of the medical staff at Kirehe District hospital.

 

The newborn is said to have hit its head straight on the floor after falling off the cot, while the only nurse around was busy on a computer.

 

And, as if that was not bad enough, the doctors went ahead and discharged them despite the baby’s visibly swollen head and pleas for action from the mother, only for the baby to die on the following day.

 

Clearly this case remains deeply shrewded in mystery. How the baby was left on its own just after birth – at the stage newborns are most vulnerable to the new environment and thus need maximum medical attention – while the mother was still being stitched is shocking to say the least.  

And the hospital’s attitude following this tragic incident only rubs salt into the wound. The bereaved father says the hospital director has since been dodging him. That’s disturbing and regrettable.

The Ministry of Health says the Medical Council is looking into the matter. That’s welcome but whoever is in charge should leave no stone unturned. It is obvious there are basic professional ethics that weren’t observed at time of and after delivery.

However, there is need for police to get involved in order to get to the bottom of the issue, especially since this happened just weeks after a pregnant woman also fell off a bed at the same hospital and died.

We cannot afford such cases of gross neglect. Action must be taken and made public to serve as a deterrent.

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