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Nine-day-old baby dies at Bihar government hospital after being bitten by rats; probe ordered

The infant, admitted at the neo-natal intensive care unit, succumbed to the injuries and infection caused because of rats biting its limbs, said the baby's distraught father, Phuran Chaupal.

Published: 31st October 2018 12:35 AM  |   Last Updated: 31st October 2018 12:35 AM   |  A+A-

Image of a baby used for representational purpose only.

Express News Service

PATNA: Another case of poor condition at government-run hospitals emerged on Tuesday in Bihar, where a nine-day-old infant died after being allegedly bitten by rats on fingers and toes.

Bihar health minister Mangal Pandey, however, refuted the charges. "It was not a case of rats biting the infant. I spoke to the hospital authorities, and they said the bandages were put because of the injections the infant had been administered," he said.

But, the infant's death at the Darbhanga Medical College and Hospital (DMCH) did no good to state-run hospitals, especially a week after a stray dog entered the operation theatre of another government hospital and ran away with a patient's amputated leg.

The infant, admitted at the neo-natal intensive care unit, succumbed to the injuries and infection caused because of rats biting its limbs, said the baby's distraught father, Phuran Chaupal.

"The baby was born with a heart defect. We expected that he would be alright through treatment at the DMCH. But, we found rats nibbling at his limbs, which led to his death," a sobbing Chaupal said, showing journalists the bandaged fingers and toes of the infant.

He accused DMCH authorities of utter negligence and apathy. "Strict action should be taken against the hospital authorities for such negligence. How can the poor trust government hospitals?"

Chaupal and his wife lodged a complaint at the Darbhanga district magistrate's office about their infant son's death. Deputy development commissioner Kari Prasad Mahto said a probe was ordered to look into the couple's allegations.

While DMCH doctors admitted that some sections of the hospital were infested with rodents, they denied that the infant's death was due to rat bites. "The infant was already in a serious condition because of a heart ailment, due to which oxygen supply to his brain was not normal. We tried to revive the baby but failed," said Dr Om Prakash, a paediatrics specialist at DMCH. "It is true that some areas of the hospital are infested with rodents, but this infant was not bitten by rodents. The allegations are baseless."



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