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Covid patient’s family blames Ahmedabad hospital after he dies within a day of being discharged

The man was found dead at a bus stop, close to where he was dropped off by a transport service, after he was discharged from the Civil Hospital. He never made it home.

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New Delhi: The family of a deceased 67-year-old textile worker in Ahmedabad, whose body was found Friday at a bus stop nearly 10 km away from the Civil Hospital a day after he was discharged, has alleged negligence on the part of the administration.

Ganpat Makwana was discharged by the hospital authorities even though he was critical, alleged his son Kirti, who added that his symptoms were not mild, and needed closer medical attention.

“He was not eating. His state was bad enough for him to be admitted into hospital. How can they let a critical patient go just like that?” said Kirti.

Ganpat had reached the Civil Hospital on 10 May after he developed a cough and dizziness. He was admitted and tested for the novel coronavirus. Three days later, his report came back positive.

“He had developed symptoms 3-4 days before being admitted. We had no contact with him while he was in the hospital, and we didn’t even know he had been discharged,” Kirti told ThePrint. “On 15 May, we got a call from the cops telling us to pick up his body. We were shocked.”

According to Dr M.M. Prabhakar, the officer on duty at Civil Hospital, Ganpat was discharged on 14 May and asked to remain in home quarantine since he was found to be mildly symptomatic.

“His symptoms were mild, and as per the new guidelines, the protocol is for him to go home, so we advised home quarantine. He was picked up by the municipal corporation’s transport system and let off at the bus stop near his home. We don’t know what happened after that, it’s being looked into,” said Dr Prabhakar.

On Sunday, Gujarat Chief Minister Vijay Rupani called for a detailed probe to ascertain the cause of Ganpat’s death.

Also read: IAS officers, Nobel winners, filmmaker — states gather their best to battle Covid crisis

‘Accidental death’, rest of the family not tested

Ganpat Makwana lived in Danilimda, a densely-populated hotspot in Covid-hit Ahmedabad.

According to Bipin Ahire, deputy commissioner of police (Zone 6), Ganpat was let off close to the bus stop. A case of accidental death has been registered in the Danilimda police station.

“The CCTV footage indicates that he came to the bus stop walking from the spot he had been dropped at. He was not in good health according to the son, and didn’t walk more than 100-150 meters at a time,” Ahire told ThePrint. “His body was found by a security guard at around 3 am. We are waiting on the post-mortem report.”

Ganpat lived with his wife, while Kirti lives about 100 meters away with his wife and two children. The family said none of them were tested after Ganpat’s diagnosis and subsequent death.

“We were called to V.S. Hospital by the police, where the post mortem had been conducted. The medics told us to transport the body to the cremation ground ourselves, even though we didn’t have any protective gear, so that’s what we did,” said Kirti.

Also read: ‘Low testing, no healthcare’ — residents of Ahmedabad’s hotspots cry for govt help

‘Negligence’ in Civil Hospital

The incident has sparked outrage and drawn censure, including from Vadgam MLA Jignesh Mevani.

“This type of carelessness, indifference, and negligence hasn’t been seen anywhere in the country,” said Mevani, who also questioned the ‘Gujarat model’ that has been touted for being an effective healthcare system.

Earlier in April, Civil Hospital was criticised because 25 Covid-19 positive patients were left waiting outside the hospital for beds for over four hours.

Civil Hospital is the nodal facility for Covid-19 patients in Ahmedabad.

Gujarat has recorded one of the highest death rates from coronavirus, and has the second highest number of infections in India. As of Monday morning, it recorded 11,379 active cases and 659 deaths, according to the Union health ministry.

Also read: Infections soar, high death rate, slow recoveries – Covid deals a deadly blow to Gujarat


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