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Agra: Probe ordered into ‘mock drill’ of shutting oxygen supply in hospital

The district administration in Agra launched a probe after the owner of a private hospital was heard in a video allegedly claiming how the hospital shut off oxygen supply for five minutes on April 27 as part of a ‘mock drill’ to see which patients would survive and which would die.

Also read: Take strict action against those behind ‘heinous crime’ at Agra hospital: Rahul Gandhi

Twentytwo patients started turning blue while 74 others survived, owner of Paras Hospital Arinjay Jain can be heard in the video which was widely shared on social media.

In the video, Mr. Jain, whose face cannot be seen, says there was acute shortage of oxygen on the day and claimed that they were told even the Chief Minister could not arrange oxygen for them.

He says they started discharging patients and counselling the families. While some were willing to listen others did not, he said. This is when he decided to come up with a ‘mock-drill’ to find out who will survive and who will die.

“We did a mock drill at 7 a.m. and identified 22 patients. We realised they would die. We shut it [oxygen] down for five minutes. They started turning blue.”

Mr. Jain then said they asked the kin of the remaining 74 families to arrange their own cylinders.

District Magistrate Agra Prabhu N Singh, after conducting a preliminary probe, said there were no deaths due to lack of oxygen in the hospital. He also said an FIR would be lodged against the hospital owner under the Epidemics Act for trying to spread ‘fear’ through his comments that the oxygen had run out at a plant in Modinagar on that day. The hospital would also be sealed with immediate effect.

“He should not have said things that create an atmosphere of fear,” the DM told media.

The 55 patients in the hospital would be shifted elsewhere, he said.

Mr. Jain clarified that his words in the video were being misconstrued and claimed that by mock drill he did not mean that the hospital shut down the central oxygen supply.

“It was not cut off.” Mr. Jain said the hospital ‘adjusted’ the oxygen flow as per the needs for ‘rationale’ use.

Explaining his comments, Mr. Jain said by 22 patients were identified, he meant they were declared critical so that the distribution of oxygen supply could be decided judiciously.

“We managed to save many of those 22 patients through this management. The less-dependant patients were made to lie prone,” he told a news agency.

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Printable version | Jul 27, 2021 11:24:11 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/probe-ordered-after-owner-says-oxygen-supply-shut-off-at-hospital-as-part-of-mock-drill/article34759648.ece

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