A woman died in childbirth on Tuesday at a hospital in Multan’s Muzaffarabad area.
The family blamed the death and the stillbirth on the doctors and vandalised the hospital building. They dispersed only after the police arrived on the scene and promised appropriate action against those responsible.
Muhammad Javed, a resident of Khudadad Colony, said he had brought his wife, Shehnaz Bibi, 28, who was expecting their first child, to Afzal Medicare, a private hospital, at around 5am.
He said the nurses, attending his wife, told him to wait for the doctor to arrive. He said no doctor had arrived six hours later. As his wife’s condition got worse, some other doctor was called to help, who told him to arrange three bags of blood. He said when he returned half and hour later with the blood, he found that his iwfe had had a stillbirth and that his wife was in a critical condition.
He said the doctors told him to take her to Nishtar Hospital owing to her condition, but she died before she could be taken there.
Some of her relatives then attacked the hospital and broke some windows. Some of them also entered the doctors’ offices and destroyed medicines and some medical equipment.
They also chanted slogans against the hospital administration and accused it of negligence. They blocked the road out side the hospital for more than three hours.
A police team, headed by DSP Shahida Nasreen, then arrived on the scene and assured the family that appropriate action will be taken against those responsible. The protesters then dispersed. No one was arrested, the DSP said.
The hospital administration estimated the losses to the hospital at Rs1 million.
Talking to The Express Tribune, Dr Uzma Ajmal, the gynaecologist who treated Shehnaz Bibi, said the patient had been treated with full care. She said tests on the patient had revealed that she was suffering from disseminated intravascular coagulation, a blood disorder in which the proteins that control blood clotting become abnormally active. She said her husband was informed about it and told to arrange blood. She said her husband returned two hours later.
She said observing the patient’s excess bleeding, she was referred to Nishtar Hospital.
“We had told her family earlier that she should be taken to Nishtar Hospital, but they wanted to stay here,” she said.
Muhammad Sarfraz, a brother of the deceased, said he did not trust the police or the doctors to acknowledge their fault.
Published in The Express Tribune, August 8th, 2012.