KOLKATA: The death of six children, within the last 24 hours, at Malda Medical College and Hospital has created a furore in North Bengal. The death toll within last one month alone is 26.
On Saturday, the hospital authorities claimed the children had died due to malnutrition. However, the parents complained of neglect by doctors and nurses.
The children were admitted with fever, and complaints of vomiting and convulsions, which doctors attributed to malnutrition. They said the infants were brought to the hospital in a critical condition.
The parents alleged that the hospital lacked adequate doctors and that the medical equipment were not functioning.
However, of the deaths in June, the deaths of 20 children, out of 52 admitted with “unspecified illness”, was attributed to “litchi syndrome”. The deaths in June were compared to 44 deaths in Bihar, in districts surrounding Muzaffarpur. Since both Malda and Muzaffarpur are famous for the juicy fruit, the jargon “litchi syndrome” evolved.
In January, 16 children had died in this hospital.