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Chhattisgarh sterilisation tragedy: Besides medical negligence, guidelines for operations also violated

These women had undergone operation at a family planning camp organized by the state government in Bilaspur on Saturday.

Written by Ashutosh Bhardwaj | Bilaspur | Updated: November 12, 2014 9:11 am
A woman being taken to hospital on Monday. (Source: Express photo) A woman being taken to hospital on Monday. (Source: Express photo)

As the death toll rose to 12 on Tuesday, three days after the sterilisation camp organised by the state government in Takhatpur block of Bilaspur district on Saturday, enquiries revealed that besides medical negligence, guidelines and procedures outlined for such operations were also seemingly violated.

Of the 83 women who underwent laparoscopic tubectomies, over 50 are still in hospital. Twenty-five of them are reported to be critical.
According to the central government’s guidelines, a medical team cannot conduct more than 30 laparoscopic tubectomies in a day, with three separate laparoscopes — that means not more than 10 tubectomies with a single instrument, as each instrument needs to be properly sterilised after every operation.

The guidelines state that if there are additional surgeons, instruments and supplies, the number of operations per team can be increased, but in no case should it exceed 50. Even then, it puts a cap of 10 operations by a single surgeon with a single instrument.

The hospital where camp was held has been sealed The hospital where camp was held has been sealed

But in Bilaspur, just one doctor, Dr R K Gupta, conducted 83 operations with one instrument in five hours — less than four minutes per operation. Dr Gupta is considered an expert in such cases, and was awarded by Chief Minister Raman Singh on January 26 this year for conducting 50,000 laparoscopic tubectomies.

The government’s guidelines also state that all sterilisation camps must be organised only at “established healthcare facilities” recognised by the Government of India. However, the Bilaspur operations were conducted at a private charitable hospital in Pendri village which has remained closed, almost abandoned, for about a year now.

A health worker who was present at the camp said one room of the hospital was opened, and all the women were made to lie down on the floor for the tubectomies. Though the government claimed to have sealed the hospital yesterday, many people visited it today.

While State Health Minister Amar Agarwal denied pressure to meet targets set under the central government’s family planning scheme, health officials pointed at the data to indicate that they face routine pressure to hurriedly meet the targets.

According to the available records, this was not the first time that so many tubectomies were conducted in a single day. Officers of the family planning department noted that there has not been a single instance in the last several years when the number of laparoscopic tubectomies conducted at a camp by a doctor in a day was less than the prescribed ten. “This figure often crosses 100,” said an official.

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Narendra Modi called up Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Raman Singh on Tuesday and is learnt to have taken strong exception to the incident. “The PM has asked Singh to ensure a thorough investigation & action in the entire issue,” the PMO tweeted.

Significantly, until Modi’s call, the government was reluctant to even admit negligence in the case. Bilaspur CMO R K Bhange had defended Gupta yesterday, saying he is a “senior doctor”. Responding to the demand for the Health Minister’s removal, the Chief Minister had said: “Operations are conducted by doctors, not ministers.”

The state government’s tone seemed to have changed today. Singh suspended Dr Gupta, Block Medical Officer of Takhatpur Dr Pramod Tiwari, Bilaspur CMO R K Bhange and State Coordinator of Family Planning Programme K C Uraon, and ordered an FIR against them. Director, Health Services, Dr Kamalpreet Singh has also been transferred.

While the government announced a compensation of Rs 2 lakh each for the families of the dead yesterday, Singh today raised it to Rs 4 lakh.

In New Delhi, sources in AIIMS confirmed that they had received orders from the Union Health Ministry to send a team of four doctors to Chhattisgarh to attend to the women in hospital. “A multi-disciplinary team of four doctors, including surgeons, critical care specialists and gynecologists, will be travelling to Chhattisgarh tomorrow morning,” said a senior AIIMS official.

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  1. B
    Nov 13, 2014 at 4:26 am
    would you share same thought in the spirit you said, if any one of them hailed from your family.
    1. A
      Nov 13, 2014 at 2:29 am
      SUBJECT : Chhattisgarhs KILLER doctor held, was awarded for record 50,000surgeries .##########################ALL INDIAN DOCTORS AND SURGEONS BE WARNED- ONE DAYYOU WILL BE HUNG FOR MANSLAUGHER AND YOUR LIFE WILL BE RUINED .The comment I made below, has been SPAMMED by every Indianand foreign media – all ZIONIST foreign EVILPHARMA SUPARI fed PRESSUTES and BENAMI owned media .Despite a SUPREMECOURT order by a bench of Justices RM Lodha and AR Dave NOT to use vulnerable Indiansas LAB RATS / GUINEA PIGS for CHEAPUNTESTED GENERIC MEDICINES , this evil continues ..Such CHEAP GENERIC MEDICINES were propagated by AAMIR KHANvia SATYAMEVA JAYATE season one, and even good state governments like Jayalalitaafell prey .Defamation case was slapped on a blogger Capt Ajit Vadakayilfor pointing out that poor vulnerable Indians must NOT be used as lab rats , and that bed medicines are expensive because they have been testedSAFE ..The entire sold out to EVIL PHARMA media are doing a propaa blitzkrieg that thesurgeon RK Gupta who has done more than ONE LAKH such surgeries is a KILLER .Exactly low how cricketer SREESHANT was declared a TERRORISTusing MCOCA and black bagged and black balled - for being responsible for all evils in BCCI/IPL .The ZIONIST EVIL PHARMA SUPARI FED PRESSUTES blame thesurgeons competence, RUSTY surgical instruments, dirty clinic –every thingexcept the real cause of CHEAP UNTESTED GENERIC MEDICINES .WHY WERE VULNERABLE TRIBAL WOMEN LURED INTO SURGERY WITH1400 RUPEES ? the answer is that theydo NOT have side effects of any other drugs in their bodies and brain .VICTIMS CLEARLY DISPLA TOXIC SHOCK INFLICTED BY UNTESTEDTOXIC MEDICINES .WE INDIANS NARENDRA MODI MUST IMMEDIATELY DO A THOROUGHINQUIRY .Punch into Google search -. GUINEA PIGS FOR UNTESTED MEDICINES, FOREIGNPHARMA FUNDED NGOs VADAKAYIL .Capt ajit vadakayil..
      1. A
        Nov 12, 2014 at 2:45 pm
        SUBJECT : VULNERABLE INDIANWOMEN BEING USED AS GUINEA PIGS – CHATTISGARH STERILISATION WOMEN DEATHS .##########################################DESPITE A SUPREME COURT ORDER NOT TO USE INDIANS AS LAB RATSAND GUINEA PIGS FOR CHEAP UNTESTED GENERIC MEDICINES , THE CHATTISGARH GOVT HASBEEN USING SUCH MEDICINES .On 3rd Jan 2013 Supreme Court , slammed the Centre for its failure to stopillegal clinical trials of untested drugs by multinational companies, sayingthe drug trials are creating HAVOC inthe country and causing death of many citizens .A bench of justices RM Lodha and AR Dave RULED that allclinical trials will be done under the supervision of the health secretary atthe Centre. QUOTE You have to protecthealth of citizens of the country. It is your obligation. Deaths must be arrestedand illegal trials must be sta UNQUOTE - the bench said, asking thegovernment to handle the menace on an urgent basis .The apex court said that the government has gone into deepslumber on the issue and has failed toput in place proper mechanisms to stop rackets of multinational companies, which areconducting illegal clinical trials . SUCH CHEAP UNTESTEDGENERIC MEDICINES WERE PROPAGATED BY ZIONIST SPONSORED TV PROGRAMME SATYAMEVA JAYATE SEASON 1 .DEFAMATION CASE BY CYBER CELL POLICE WAS SLAPPED AGAINST ABLOGGER NAMED CAPT AJIT VADAKAYIL , BYAAMIR KHAN FOR POINTING THIS OUT .THE ENTIRE WESTERN MEDIA IS BLAMING THE STERILISATION DOCTORAS BEING UNSKILLED , FOR USING RUSTY INSTRUMENTS AND A DIRTY UNHUGENIC CLINIC .THIS IS A LIE .THE DOCTOR RK GUPTA IS SKILLED AND ONE LAKH CASES EXPERIENCED .VICTIMS CLEARLY DISPLA TOXIC SHOCK INFLICTED BY UNTESTEDTOXIC MEDICINES .THESE WOMEN USED AS GUINEA PIGS WERE GIVEN 1400 RUPEES TO BELAB RATS .NARENDRA MODI MUST IMMEDIATELY DO A THOROUGH INQUIRY .Punch into Google search -. GUINEA PIGS FORUNTESTED MEDICINES, FOREIGN PHARMA FUNDED NGOs VADAKAYIL .Capt ajit vadakayil..----
        1. Andy Mills
          Nov 12, 2014 at 6:40 am
          Why are you so surprised by this silence? They are women and this happenedin India, situation normaldia earns its status as the fourth most dangerous country in the world inwhich to be a woman well. Truly sad.
          1. A
            Nov 12, 2014 at 4:16 am
            How can you call it shallow reporting. Express has been reporting this since 2 days on front page.
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