A 20-year-old Dalit woman delivered a “stillborn” baby at the entrance of the government area hospital in Bhadrachalam on Saturday after being allegedly referred to the District Headquarters Hospital by the staff at the area hospital in the temple town.

The incident sparked protests by the relatives of the woman who accused hospital staff of apathy of the hospital in providing timely medicare. Sources said that K. Anusha, a native of Dharmaram village in Wajedu mandal, who was eight months pregnant, came to the area hospital in Bhadrachalam in the early hours of the day with severe labour pains.

According to sources, she was examined by the hospital staff who found her severely anaemic with dead foetus died in the uterine. They referred her to the District Headquarters Hospital after the transfusion of one unit of “O” negative blood.

The family members accompanying Anusha pleaded with the duty doctor to allow the latter undergo treatment at the hospital citing their poor financial condition. However, the staff reportedly insisted that she should be immediately rushed to the District Headquarters Hospital due to scarcity of “O” negative blood.

Anusha was taken to a private hospital in the temple town, but the staff there expressed their reluctance to admit her due to non-availability of “O” negative blood. Her family members again took her to the area hospital an hour later, but Anusha gave birth to a “stillborn “baby in an autorickshaw at the entrance of the hospital.

Anusha came to the hospital in a severely anaemic condition with foetus in intrauterine death (IUD) status, said Koti Reddy, Superintendent of the hospital. The staff concerned transfused one unit of “O” negative blood and referred her to the district headquarters hospital considering her serious condition, he added.