The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Hospital mixes up mother & dead baby

Oct. 24: The death of a day-old girl and a death certificate in the name of the mother after her son’s death marked another day of healthcare debacles in the state.

Uttarpara State General Hospital in Hooghly and Calcutta Medical College and Hospital extended the list of possible hazards in state-run hospitals.

When the body of the boy born yesterday to Sujata Mondal from Sonarpur in South 24-Parganas was taken to the Topsia burial ground from Calcutta Medical college, relatives discovered that his death certificate was issued in the name of the mother.

In Uttarpara, relatives laid siege to the hospital demanding “punishment” for those responsible for another child’s death. Rambabu Mondal, the father, alleged that his baby died because of the nurses’ negligence. Mondal, a rickshaw-puller, said: “She died of suffocation. The nurses should have taken care of that.”

The girl born last evening was keeping well and the nurses alleged that her mother had thrown a blanket on her. Mondal was told in the morning that the baby was ill after the blanket episode. When he came to see her at 4 pm, he was told that she had died at 1.45 pm.

“I asked them to hand over the body but they said I must sign a statement saying she died because of my wife’s negligence. They threatened to get me arrested if I did not sign it,” Mondal said. He has lodged a complaint with police.

Hospital superintendent Banamali Bala said an inquiry committee has been formed. “According to primary reports, the baby died of suffocation. The panel will submit a report in two days,” said Bala.

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