Guwahati, Aug. 29: The Dewan household at Zoo Road Tiniali here is still trying to come to terms with the death of Roopjyoti Dewan, 54, and his wife Loni from dengue fever within a span of just three days.
While Loni had succumbed to the fever in the intensive care unit of Down Town Hospital at midnight on Monday, her husband died in the same hospital early this morning.
They are survived by their 23-year-old son Manish.
According to family members, the couple had developed fever last week. While Loni’s condition deteriorated quickly, it took some time for the disease to affect her husband. The family alleged that the delay by Guwahati Medical College and Hospital’s new blood bank in providing blood platelets was one of the reasons behind Loni’s death.
“My brother Roopjyoti and sister-in-law Loni developed fever last week. Our family doctor treated them for viral fever but when their condition worsened, we got their blood samples tested at a private diagnostic laboratory on Sunday morning. By evening, the laboratory informed us that both had dengue,” Dewan’s sister Deepa Choudhury said.
When they rushed Loni to the GMCH, doctors there informed them that she had developed lung infection, septicemia and brain haemorrhage. But as no vacant bed was available in the hospital’s ICU, she had to be rushed to Down Town Hospital.
“The junior doctors in GMCH helped us immensely. They even gave a note requesting the GMCH blood bank to give us five units of blood platelets, as the case was critical. But the blood bank staff refused to give us the platelets saying that the doctors had not mentioned dengue on the note. Though they finally gave us three units, we had to wait for an hour and a half. Precious time was lost. We rushed to Down Town Hospital where Loni had already been taken by a 108 emergency ambulance,” Deepa said.
The family also got Roopjyoti admitted to the same hospital on the same day, as they did not wish to take any chance with his health.
“Their entire happy family has been destroyed. Had we got the platelets on time maybe Loni’s life could have been saved. Our brother, too, was speaking and behaving normally till Tuesday. But his condition suddenly turned critical. We just hope that no other family has to undergo what we have gone through today,” Deepa said.
“Why isn’t there any coordination between different departments at GMCH? If a patient requires an ICU or platelets, doctors in the emergency unit should be able to convey the information to people concerned over phone. Why do we have to lose valuable time in this way?” she asked.
GMCH superintendent Ramen Talukdar said, “Platelets are being provided from our blood bank to dengue patients in other hospitals. But we also require these to treat blood cancer and dengue patients currently admitted in our hospital. The staff at the blood bank had difficulty arranging the platelets for the patient as there may have been a shortage.”
Members of the state unit of the Aam Aadmi Party today staged a protest on the failure of the state government to address the rising incidence of dengue in the state. The members assembled at Zoo Road Tinali holding banners saying, “You are entering dengue zone”.