Ambulance driver quizzed about death
A committee probing the death of Madhab Narayan Dutta, a suspected Covid patient who had collapsed while trying to board an ambulance at Bongaon Sub-divisional Hospital and died unattended on Saturday night, has questioned the driver of the ambulance.
Dutta’s wife, Alpana, has alleged that her husband had collapsed because no one was around to help him board the ambulance in front of the emergency ward. Dutta, 65, was being taken to another hospital when he died.
The inquiry committee — comprising two doctors of the government-run hospital — asked the driver, Nilmony Debnath, why he did not alert the ward master’s office after the patient had fallen on the ground and why his assistant was not around.
Debnath, in his early 20s, reportedly told the committee that he had gone to look for people who could help him lift the patient into the ambulance.
“But it was the responsibility of the driver and his assistant to help a patient board the ambulance. The driver didn’t help and the assistant was not there,” said an official of the hospital.
The committee has apparently come to know that Debnath’s assistant had gone home to Gopalnagar in Bongaon, around 10km from the hospital, and failed to return on time because his two-wheeler had got a flat tyre.
“The hospital has provided accommodation to three ambulance drivers and as many assistants. No one is supposed to leave the hospital premises and go home,” an official of the hospital told Metro. “We will prepare our report by Tuesday and send it to the health department.”
Asked why he did not alert the ward master’s office about the patient’s fall, Debnath apparently told the committee that “it didn’t strike him”.