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UP Patient Death: Probe Finds IV Wasn't Fruit Juice, Hospital Demolition Stayed

A purported video claiming that the dengue patient was transfused with mosambi juice had sparked backlash online.

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India
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A three-member committee set up by Prayagraj District Magistrate Sanjay Khatri has released its findings in the death of a dengue patient, Pradeep Pandey, who was being treated at a private hospital in the UP district.

The family of the deceased had alleged that fruit juice was transfused instead of platelets, resulting in his death. Divulging the details of the probe, DM Khatri claimed that the packet contained "poorly preserved" platelets as opposed to the family's claim that it contained "mosambi" juice.

"Apart from this, some medicines were administered to the patients which is not according to the prescribed (medical) guidelines. Separate action is being taken by the circle officer on that," DM Khatri said.

A three-member committee comprising a sub-divisional magistrate, circle officer, and deputy chief medical officer probed the allegations made by the family of the deceased and submitted its findings to the district magistrate.

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Demolition Stayed for Six Weeks

36-year-old Pradeep Pandey, a resident of Bamrauli area in Prayagraj, was admitted to Global Hospital and Healthcare under the limits of Dhoomanganj police station on 14 October. Pandey complained of high fever and on 17 October, his condition deteriorated and he was rushed to another hospital. He passed away on 19 October.

A purported video showing yellow fluid in a packet, with the claim that it is mosambi or sweet lime juice and that Pandey was allegedly transfused with it, has been doing the rounds on social media, evoking sharp reactions from netizens.

After the shocking allegations, an FIR under sections 419, 420, 467, 468, 471, 274, 304, and 120-B of the Indian Penal Code was registered against the doctors, staffers, and owner of the hospital which was sealed by the health department pending the outcome of the probe.

The local administration has further tightened the noose on the hospital by serving the owner of the building a demolition notice. In a notice by the Prayagraj Development Authority, it was alleged that the hospital is being run from a residence which has illegally come up in contravention with the norms that have been laid out.

The notice also mentioned that the hospital was served a show cause notice in 3 September last year and that a hearing had been scheduled on 9 September 2021 and 5 October 2021 but no one from the aggrieved side turned up.

Subsequently, a demolition notice was issued on 11 January earlier this year and now, the hospital has been served an ultimatum to vacate the premises by 28 October.

However, the demolition has been stayed after the owner of the building, Malati Devi, petitioned the Allahabad High Court. Granting relief to the petitioner, the court directed her to file her objection and produce the sanctioned map of the building in front of the authorities within two weeks.

The petitioner will also be at liberty to move a compounding application for any structure or portion of the building found to be illegal. If it is non compoundable, the authorities will be at liberty to proceed in accordance with the law.

"For a period of six weeks, no coercive action will be taken against the petitioner either pursuant to demolition order or sealing notice," the order read.

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'Hospital Not Responsible for Death': Owner

The Quint reached out to Saurabh Mishra, the owner of the hospital who claimed that his hospital had no role in the death of the patient.

"The patient's attendant got the blood platelets from the blood bank of a different hospital. The same was administered to the patient. You (family of the victim) are saying the blood platelets you got was mosambi juice. Now, when the findings of the probe say it was poorly preserved platelets, it is the blood bank which is responsible for this. How are we to be blamed for this?" Mishra said.

He also claimed that the patient's condition was not serious when he was discharged from the hospital.

"We have CCTV footage to corroborate our claim that the patient was fine and walked up to the ambulance when he was taken to other hospital. The role of the hospital where he died has not been questioned even once."
Saurabh Mishra, owner of Global Hospital and Healthcare

Mishra also questioned the role of the media in the incident. He alleged that fake news was published without looking into the facts of the case.

"If any patient levels allegations against the hospital, the local administration will definitely call for a probe. But it is for the media to wait for the findings before publishing the news. Now, when the findings are clear, should the media not put this news out as well?" Mishra said.

(With inputs from Sudhir Shukla in Prayagraj.)

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