Shocker in MP: Home guard goes missing from COVID ward, found dead in toilet after 33 hours

While three staff members of the hospital, including two nurses and a matron have been suspended with immediate effect in the matter, a three doctors committee has been constituted to probe the matter

Published: 23rd March 2021 10:32 PM  |   Last Updated: 23rd March 2021 10:32 PM   |  A+A-

Beds in isolation ward set up for coronavirus patients.

Image used for representational purposes (Madhav K | EPS)

By Express News Service

BHOPAL: In a shocking incident, a suspected COVID-19 patient who went missing from his bed in Bhopal's JP Hospital on Monday morning, was found dead under mysterious circumstances in the toilet of the ward around 33 hours later on Tuesday. 

While three staff members of the hospital, including two nurses and a matron, have been suspended with immediate effect in the matter, a three doctors committee has been constituted to probe the entire matter, which the hospital administration has admitted is prima facie a matter of grave negligence by the hospital staff. 

The 42-year-old home-guard jawan, Pushpraj Singh Gautam who was administered the second dose of the COVID-19 vaccine at a police hospital in Bhopal on March 17, started complaining of nausea, dizziness and difficulty in breathing. He was admitted to the hospital's COVID-19 isolation ward on Sunday a few hours after he collapsed on the floor at his residence in Bhopal. 

"He was admitted at the hospital's isolation ward as a suspected COVID-19 case on Sunday and was put on oxygen support as he was experiencing difficulty in breathing. Also, he subsequently tested COVID-19 negative but was under treatment on oxygen support. Since Monday early morning, he went missing from his bed, after which the matter was reported to the city police on Monday evening. He was found dead in the toilet of the ward at around 3:30 on Tuesday," a senior health department official told The New Indian Express. 

According to JP Hospital's civil surgeon, Dr Rakesh Srivastava, "negligence has definitely happened in the matter, due to which three staff, including a matron and two nurses, have been suspended. A probe too has been ordered in the entire matter."

Also, a notice has been served by the hospital administration to the security agency tasked with security at the hospital. 

Surprisingly, the entire incident has exposed many lacunae in the hospital management, including the CCTV cameras at the COVID-19 ward not being operational and no checking or cleaning of the concerned toilet, since the home guard jawan went missing from his bed on Monday morning. Importantly, the concerned toilet is located just around 10 ft from the COVID-19 ward. 

The deceased jawan's family, however, alleged that he died due to post-vaccination complications. 

"Throughout Monday, my son remained missing, but the doctors and staff at the hospital did nothing to search for him. Instead, they termed him a bhagoda (fugitive). They showed us footage of all parts of the hospital, except the ward in which he was admitted. We came to know on Tuesday that CCTV cameras in the COVID-19 ward are not functioning. Who'll give my son back to me now," the deceased home guard jawan's father, Narendra Singh Gautam, a retired home guard said on Tuesday. 

The deceased home guard jawan's wife said, "I talked to my husband over the phone on Monday early morning before he went missing. He was fine, as he told me that he was no longer having difficulty in breathing and wanted to sleep. Once he went missing, instead of searching him, the hospital staff dubbed him as bhagoda. How can a person, who is on oxygen support and wants to sleep, run away from the hospital?." 

The home guard jawan is survived by a widow and three children. The hospital management while denying the family's allegations that the home guard jawan died due to post-vaccination complications, said the vaccine is completely safe. 

"Only the body's autopsy will reveal how the home guard jawan actually died," a senior hospital official said. 


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