Tribal couple carry baby’s body on scooter for about 120 km from Visakhapatnam to Paderu in Andhra Pradesh

They accuse KGH staff of refusing to provide an ambulance for the purpose; hospital Superintendent denies allegation, says they have been advised to wait till an ambulance is arranged; Chief Minister seeks report from District Collector

February 16, 2023 08:23 pm | Updated 09:10 pm IST - VISAKHAPATNAM

A tribal couple shifted the body of their baby on a scooter all the way to Paderu, located about 120 km from here, on February 16 (Thursday) as the staff at the King George Hospital (KGH) in the city allegedly refused to provide an ambulance for the purpose.

The couple also alleged that negligence on the part of the KGH staff resulted in the death of their child.

Meanwhile, Chief Minister Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy sought a report from the District Collector on the issue.

“The couple have left the ward with the body of their baby on a scooter even before an ambulance is arranged. They have been asked to wait till the ambulance arrives. We have informed the Paderu DMHO and the ITDA PO to arrange an ambulance from Paderu to their native hamlet Kumudu. The couple have been traced in Paderu, from where they have been shifted in an ambulance,” KGH Superintendent P. Ashok Kumar told The Hindu.

“The woman, Ch. Maheswari, had delivered the baby on February 2 at Paderu. When she developed convulsions and the baby suffered respiratory issues, they were shifted to the city and admitted to KGH. The baby was on ventilator support for the past 14 days at the NICU and died today. They could have waited till the arrival of the ambulance,” he said.

“There is a provision for arranging a private ambulance when it is not readily available in the hospital. The ‘104’ Ambulance Coordinator decides the rate and the payment is made by the government. In spite of the availability of an alternative, it is unfortunate that the couple have chosen to leave without intimation. They have tried to sensationalise the issue by speaking to the media at different places on their way,” Dr. Ashok Kumar said.

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