Girl injected with ‘contaminated’ saline dies

Hyderabad: The death of six-year-old Sai Pravalika in the early hours of Tuesday at Gandhi Hospital remains a grim reminder to all those who visit hospitals that carelessness on the part of medical staff could cost an innocent life.

Her tragic end came 62 days after being admitted in the hospital with fever on December 7. The nursing staff administered saline to her on December 15 after which she developed breathlessness and rash all over the body.

The girl’s father then noticed some insects floating in the saline bottle and alerted the duty nurse. When an attempt was made to cover up by taking away the contaminated saline bottle, the girl’s father snatched it and took it to the higher ups of the hospital administration.

It was alleged that the hospital authorities failed to act immediately and instead tried to suppress the fact about the child being administered a contaminated saline. When the media brought the issue to public gaze, the Gandhi Hospital Superintendent ordered a probe into the incident and sent the saline bottle for analysis. Even before the inquiry report was out, the girl died.

Her body was taken to her native village in Jangaon district. Her father Bhikshapathy has accused the hospital staff of medical negligence and demanded the government to take stringent action against those responsible for his daughter’s death.

 However, the hospital superintendent claimed that the child died of prolonged illness due to a rare neurological disorder and not due to contaminated saline as was being alleged by her parents. He further claimed that the saline bottles of the same batch were not found to be contaminated and the company which manufactures the saline has come forward to help in the ongoing investigation.

The doctors in the hospital claimed that the girl was being treated for recurring infection and bouts of pneumonia. It was further claimed that even if the saline was contaminated, the infection could be controlled within a week and could not have lasted for nearly two months. –NSS

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