BENGALURU: Fate played a cruel game for an accident victim even as his relatives scurried around the city trying to arrange for blood transfusion with demonetised notes of Rs 500 in hand. The victim died on Thursday night at Victoria Hospital.
Relatives of Raju, the road accident victim, had to struggle on Wednesday as private blood banks refused to accept demonetised notes. Though the government included government hospitals and government pharmacies in the exempted list for 72 hours, private blood banks weren’t part of it.
Raju (30) , a resident of Doddagutte village near Nelamangala, was knocked down by a car on Tuesday afternoon while crossing the Tumakuru Road. He was admitted to Victoria Hospital at 11:30 pm on Tuesday by which time he had lost 60 per cent blood. The next day, a combination of factors claimed his life, one being dearth of change.
Raju’s wife Soumya told Express, “We needed Rs 2,600 for procuring four units of plasma and two units of red blood cells. When we reached M S Ramaiah, they insisted on `100 notes. My brother-in-law’s friend Lakshminarasimahiah even offered to deposit his driver’s licence and mobile phone with the blood bank. The DL is still with Ramaiah Hospital. But they did not budge and gave us blood only after three hours. For two days, we roamed about blood banks in Vasanthnagar and one near Uma Talkies.”
“AB+ is a rare blood group and no blood bank stores it in more quantities as they can’t risk its expiry. In case of AB+, blood banks generally have the donors’ contact numbers. That night, we didn’t have stock. Also, the next morning, because of these currency notes issue, it became more difficult.
“The patient had haemorrhagic shock (extreme loss of blood). When our blood bank doesn’t have stock it refers the patient to a list of banks that might possibly have it,” said an anaesthesia PG student who was on duty at Victoria ‘s Emergency and Trauma Centre that night.
Dr Balaji Pai, special officer, Emergency and Trauma Care Centre, Victoria Hospital, said, “He was given 14 units of blood components from Victoria. Our stock was exhausted and we couldn’t give him anymore, which is why we sent a request to other blood banks. Each unit has 300ml of blood.”
The staff at Victoria’s ICU said Raju’s relatives struggled to travel to different blood banks as they did not have enough change. They reached the blood bank at MS Ramaiah Hospital at 9:45 am on Wednesday to get fresh frozen plazma and packed red blood cells. However, it was a three-hour wait before they could finally get it.
Dr V Nandakishore, chief of the blood bank at M S Ramaiah Hospital said, “It’s true that they waited, but not because they had only two `500 notes, but because cross-matching of blood takes time. We need to check whether transfusion will not cause any reaction in the patient. Hence, we should cross match. In fact, they had to pay `400 for each unit, a total of ` 2,400. We gave it to them free of cost on humanitarian grounds.”
Victoria’s forensic medicine department said the post-mortem was done on Friday noon.