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Since 1st March, 1999
 
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Probe into vaccine death

Bokaro, Jan. 5: A newborn baby died mysteriously today after he was administered vaccines — part of the immunisation schedule for infants — at a primary health centre and a dispensary in Bokaro, prompting the district civil surgeon to order a probe after the victim’s kin lodged an FIR.

Three-month-old Rishikesh started bleeding from his nostrils and mouth soon after his mother Manju Prasad, 31, and cousin Abhishek Kumar brought him from the dispensary to their Sector XII residence this afternoon, police said.

Abhishek, who filed an FIR with city police, alleged negligence and foul play by the medical staff at the government dispensary at Sector I where the infant was given a Hepatitis B injection around noon.

The victim’s father, Mahesh Prasad who works for an NGO is away in Patna. His mother and cousin had first taken Rishikesh to a primary health centre at Sector XII at 10am for the mandatory vaccines.

The medical staff at the health centre administered doses of polio, BCG (tuberculosis) and triple antigen (diphtheria, tetanus and pertussis) to the infant. When the infant’s mother and relative asked about the hepatitis vaccine, the staff said it was unavailable and told them to approach the dispensary at Sector I, about 3km away.

In the FIR, Abhishek said that when they reached the dispensary around 11.30pm, the medical staff asked for money for the injection.

After they pleaded with the officials, the Hepatitis B injection was administered for free.

An hour later, the baby was rushed to Bokaro General Hospital where doctors declared him brought dead.

Infuriated over the incident, the victim’s mother and other family members went to the dispensary and protested before rushing to the city police station nearby to lodge their complaint.

Bokaro civil surgeon S.K. Tewary later constituted a three-member medical team led by K.K. Sinha and Virendra Kumar to enquire into the sudden death.

Tewary told The Telegraph that he had asked the team to probe reasons leading to the death.

“An autopsy will be conducted, while the vial of the injection given to the infant has been sealed and sent for medical tests,” he added.