Nepal | May 28, 2020

Janakpur Provincial Hospital declines to treat woman suffering from high fever

Brij KumarYadav
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Janakpurdham, March 27

Janakpur Provincial Hospital in Province 2 refused to treat a poor Dalit woman, who had high fever. Marani Devi Sada, 45, of Mulabari in Dhanushadham Municipality, struggled for medical care after the hospital refused to treat her on friday.

Sada was admitted to Godawari Modern Hospital this morning. She was suffering from high fever (103.4 degree Fahrenheit). Godawari Modern Hospital then referred Sada to Janakpur Provincial Hospital, suspecting she had contracted the novel coronavirus.

Sada, a chronic patient of heart ailment, was asked to be placed in quarantine as soon as the provincial hospital authorities went through the referral paper issued by Godawari Hospital. Sada’s temperature was also not taken in the hospital and no doctor attended to her. Sada’s daughter, Kari, said nobody paid any attention to her mother in the provincial hospital after they went through Sada’s referral paper.

After that Kari searched for an ambulance to take her mother to a quarantine site set up at Mithila Ayurved Medical College in Ganguli of Nagarain Municipality, some seven kilometres away from Janakpurdham, but none were to be found. An ambulance belonging to Nepal Red Cross Society refused to ferry Sada to the quarantine centre.

Janakpur Provincial Hospital Chief Nagendra Prasad Yadav said they had advised to keep Sada in quarantine as health workers did not have personal protective equipment to attend to her. “The provincial hospital does not have ICU to treat COVID-19 patients and doctors do not have PPE,” Yadav said.

DSP Rameswor Karki of Dhanusha said Sada was kept in quarantine in Nagarain Municipality.

Police had managed an ambulance to ferry her to the quarantine centre. Though Mithila Ayurved Medical College has 50 rooms, only 20 beds have been prepared for quarantine purpose. Health workers of the municipality are keeping watch over suspected persons placed in quarantine here.

According to Yadav, swab sample of Sada has been collected and will be sent to Kathmandu for test. If she tests positive, Sada will have to be taken to Kathmandu for coronavirus treatment.

Province 2 has quarantine centres in 55 places with 872 beds. A total of 165 people have been kept in quarantine at various places right now, said Senior Health Administrator Bijay Jha of the provincial hospital. He added that hospitals were facing acute shortage of PPE for doctors and health workers.

A version of this article appears in print on March 28, 2020 of The Himalayan Times.

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