Death of five-month-old baby at GPHC being investigated – distraught parents at a loss as to how child died

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The parents of a five-month-old baby boy who succumbed recently while receiving treatment at the Georgetown Public Hospital Corporation (GPHC) are still at a loss as to how their child died.

According to the family, the baby, Kumar Singh also known as Videsh, was suffering from diarrhea when he was admitted to the city hospital last Tuesday.

Photo of baby Videsh who died at the GPHC
Photo of baby Videsh who died at the GPHC

However, the parents claim they were prevented from accessing their child while he was receiving treatment. Some 17 hours later they were allowed by staff at the GPHC to visit their child but little did they know that their son had died.

Shivanie Persaud of Strathspey, East Coast Demerara (ECD) told INews today that on Tuesday evening she noticed her son excreting a number of times and she, along with her husband, rushed the baby to the hospital.

This was around 20:00hrs on Tuesday and it was not some hours later that a doctor spoke with her about her baby’s condition and she was put in the waiting area with her sick child. Midnight came and baby Videsh still was not able to obtain the treatment he needed, Shivanie recalled.

According to the grieving woman, her son received saline around 08:00hrs on Wednesday morning but it was not “dripping”.

“They didn’t treat my baby until like 8am and when the baby get hooked up for saline it was not dripping and I told them but they didn’t listen. Then finally, around 10am, they fixed the line but the nurse said I was disgusting calling for them all the time. Anyhow, they bore baby in his flesh, not his vein, and it still wasn’t dripping ,” the young mother stated.

She recalled that sometime around noon on Wednesday she went to the ward where her baby had been placed and was prevented from seeing her child. Shivanie related that she wanted to know the status of her sick baby but that hospital personnel refused to let her stay in the same room as her son while he was being treated.

“They pull me out the ward by my waist then later they telling me how my baby hand slipped out and they have to give the baby an x-ray but I didn’t bring my child to the hospital with any sick, except diarrhea. Time passed and no x-ray was done and after some back-and-forth they put a tube in my baby’s nose to feed him…that’s what they said…. but by then I was asking for self-discharge to take my baby to a private hospital because he wasn’t getting the attention he deserved and they refused to give me my baby to go saying how it wasn’t fair to the doctors there…,” she said.

According to the distraught mother it was around 14:15hrs  that a doctor arranged for her child to receive “salt and sugar water” due to the baby being dehydrated.

At this point, Shivanie recalled that she, her husband and her mother were trying to see what was happening with the baby but again were prevented from doing so.

“They put us out the room again and until minutes to five (5 pm) then they tell us we can see baby but by the time we reach baby he was already dead. My baby’s hand was swollen and his stomach was swollen too and they said they couldn’t find vein for him and bore him all over even on top his head. If they had treated my child sooner he would have lived, if they let me take him to private (hospital) he would have lived, and they were saying they didn’t have life support machine to put my baby on because only one they have and a baby was already on it,” she added.

Meanwhile, Public Health Minister Dr George Norton told INews, when contacted for a comment today, that at present he is out of town and as soon as he gets back to his office he expects a detailed report from the relevant authorities as to what led to the baby’s death.

“I want the report on my desk by the time I get back and if the hospital staff is lacking or their actions resulted in this baby’s death then they will be dealt with accordingly. Our job is to save lives,” Minister Norton declared. (Kristen Macklingam)

14 COMMENTS

  1. If you know so much better and can do so much better why don’t you go and volunteer your services and be a part of the solution instead of amplifying the problem?

  2. Yes an innocent child died, and for that I’m truly sorry, but did you stop to consider that maybe ALL the facts were not reported in this article? My comments make a lot of sense but the majority of you who only like to amplify the negatives cannot see past your own blind following. Patients die at other hospitals too! But you don’t hear people making such a great big deal about the bad service at Balwant Singh Hospital, Woodlands Hospital or St. Joseph’s Mercy Hospital! You don’t see every single incidence of carelessness at these hospitals being blown up in the newspapers or on social media! I WILL SAY AGAIN, THERE ARE A LOT OF HARD WORKING DOCTORS AND NURSES AT THE GEORGETOWN PUBLIC HOSPITAL AND I APPLAUD AND WILL STAND UP FOR THEM. Bad talking and putting down the medical staff will not help the situation. Maybe you should volunteer your services there, walk a day in there shoes and then maybe you would see things differently.

  3. Your comments make no sense in this case. An innocent child died and the GPHC is known for treating alot of patients like crap. There are alot of unanswered questions here. I dont care how good you make them sound. In this case they are a failure

  4. You are out of order. And the fact remains that this child died as a result of Gross Negligence by these poorly trained doctor and nurses.

  5. I’ve learnt that the most cold hearted ppl at Georgetown public hospital are NURSES!!!! It’s very sad knowing they are there to help and yet they treat you like animals. I’ve experienced allot of crazy attitudes from the so called caring nurses! They just there for the money I guess….so sad …RIP baby and my condolences to the mom and dad!

  6. This child is 5months old and he should still be breast feeding as such, his mother HAVE ALL RIGHTS TO BE IN THE HOSPITAL WITH HIM!!!!!!!

  7. Out of the thousands of patients that utilize the services at GPHC only a few extremely bad cases are reported. I have two children in the public healthcare system. I’ve been at the GPHC more times than I wish to count and I have never had reason to question the abilities of the majority of the medical staff there.

    In fact if it wasn’t for the GPHC I don’t think me or my younger daughter would be alive today. There are hundreds of people that receive excellent medical care at GPHC on a daily basis but people never talk about these experiences. It’s not fair to the doctors and nurses who work their asses off to keep people alive and healthy. There are some doctors and nurses who deny themselves proper rest and proper nutrition so that they can be there to care for their patients.

    The number of bad cases can be counted at GPHC but the number of successful cases and cases of excellent treatment are countless.

  8. That is more than negligence. Far too many time we hear of these stories,the hospital will have some serious explaining to do and on paper too. But to the mother my condolence go out to you at the same time, how the heck can you not be allowed to see your baby in 17 hours that’s crazy. What kind of system are they running and we are suppose to have faith in these people who suppose to save our lives? As the other person say beg or steal what ever it takes. Let one man sorrow be a lessons for all.People need to take a stand when things like this happen.To me it seems like there are a lot that is unsaid and unknown some thing went wrong some where.

  9. Reading this story even the blind can tell that the hospital is at fault and as such need to be fully disciplined.

  10. poor child, she sufferred before she went to sleep,, where is the minister.. LGE campagin.. ms nagar etal, please take note,what goes around comes around..
    btw the last paragraph “our aim is to introduce infant mortality ” is this correct ?

  11. Accountability,responsibility and professionalism is lacking at all levels. Innocent lives are lost. Arrogance and negligence cannot be tolerated. The whole system is corrupt. Criminal proceedings to be initiated against negligent staff.

  12. Plus there is a very good Cuban doctor in Lusignan that surely would have treated this baby for whatever you could pay at the time. Why on earth would anyone take their young children to the Public Hospital??

  13. Mothers if you have to beg borrow or STEAL do no take your young precious children to those monsters at the Georgetown Public Hospital. the culture of the medical personnel there is abominable and sub-human.

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