Botched up cataract surgeries in Bihar took place at infected OT, says probe

The eyes of four persons were eviscerated at the eye hospital, to prevent the infection from spreading to the other eye and body parts.
For representational purposes
For representational purposes

PATNA: Bacterial infection in the apparatus used for surgery of cataract of 65 patients at a private hospital in Bihar’s Muzaffarpur on November 24 led to a severe infection and subsequent loss of sight of 15 of them, a report submitted by a four-member inquiry team has revealed.

Health Department Minister Mangal Pandey, who termed the incident as unfortunate, on Tuesday confirmed the receipt of the report of a microbiological test conducted at the Sri Krishna Medical College and Hospital (SKMCH) in Muzaffarpur.

“Further action will be initiated on the basis of the microbiological test. The hospital where the surgery of cataract was held has been sealed and an FIR lodged against the erring staff,” said Pandey.

Fourteen people, including three doctors, who had performed the surgery at a free eye relief camp, were named as accused in the FIR lodged at Brahmapura police station.

A copy of the report of the microbiological test has also been sent to the Bihar chapter of the Indian Medical Association, which has expressed its displeasure over a police case lodged against the doctors before the inquiry was complete.

As many as 15 patients had to undergo another surgery — 11 at the SKMCH in Muzaffarpur and four at the IGIMS in Patna — to remove their infected eyes. However, some others were still undergoing treatment at IGIMS in Patna.

Cornia of one of them has been replaced, a senior health department official said.A preliminary investigation revealed that the hospital was running without a valid licence.

The term of the licence had expired early this year, yet it was operational, a member of the probe team said. “A report has already been sent to the health department.”

The state government said it would bear the expenses incurred on the treatment of the infected patients.

“When the matter came to our notice, we constituted a four-member team of doctors to inquire into the lapses,” said Health Minister Pandey.

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The New Indian Express