India’s first fatality from swine flu has been reported from Pune where 14-year-old Rida Shaikh died on Monday night. The hospital reportedly failed to diagnose the flu and start treatment on time. It was on July 21 that Rida first showed some symptoms like a sore throat, running nose and headache. She was taken to a general physician for symptomatic treatment and started to feel better.So she went back to school on July 23. Rida was a Class IX student at the reputed girls’ convent St Anne’s located in the Camp area of Pune.
But her fever came back, and on July 26 Rida was taken to the OPD of Jehangir Hospital in Pune where doctors first diagnosed her condition as an ‘upper respiratory tract infection’ and gave her antibiotics. She was admitted to Jehangir Hospital on July 27 because of respiratory problems. On July 29 her condition deteriorated rapidly and she was shifted to the ICU and put on ventilator support. It was not until July 30 that throat swabs were sent to the National Institute of Virology for testing. Finally she was given Tamiflu only on August 1. It was a possible medical misjudgment for which the girl paid for with her life.
Blame Game Starts:
Terming the death of a swine-flu infected girl in Pune as “unfortunate”, Maharashtra chief minister Ashok Chavan has said negligence on part of the private hospital which treated the 14-year-old was to blame for it.”This incident is really unfortunate. I feel there was total negligence on part of those who admitted her to the hospital and negligence on part of the hospital,” the chief minister, who discussed the issue with senior health officials here on Monday night, said.
Health authorities would also inquire the reasons as to why proper treatment was not being given to the patient, he said. Chavan also appealed people to co-operate with the health officials and not fall prey to any rumours. He directed officials to take all possible steps to effectively deal with the swine flu cases that has crossed the 100 mark in Maharashtra, most of them being from Pune.
The family of 14-year-old Rida Shaikh on Tuesday demanded action against the private hospital and doctor who allegedly failed to diagnose her symptoms early resulting in her death due to swine flu. Rida’s parents and relatives claimed that Jahangir Hospital administration was at fault, blaming them for their daughter’s death. They are now demanding that the concerned doctor be banned from practising. The family also decided to file police complaint against the hospital with family lawyer Asif Lampwala saying that the hospital must be brought to the book for medical negligence.”We are going to sue them for damages. We will claim a lot of money. We are not interested in the money. All the money will be given to charity,” said the lawyer addressing a press conference on Tuesday afternoon in Pune.Lampwala also claimed that there was a nexus between the two private health institutions – Jehangir Hospital and Ruby Clinic – where the tests were carried out.