Family could not afford vaccine; victims kin says poverty killed the child
A three-year-old girl died due to rabies in Porbandar on Saturday. Roshni Hitesh Salat fell prey to the disease since her family could not purchase an anti-rabies vaccine (ARV).
According to the victim’s family,Roshni had received a dog-bite three months ago. She was rushed to the Bhavsinhji Civil Hospital,but her father,Hitesh Salat,a construction labourer,was unable to bear the cost of the ARV. Hence,the vaccine was not administered to her.
On Friday,she was admitted in the hospital where she was diagnosed with rabies. She died early Saturday morning. Rajubhai Salat,maternal uncle of the victim,said,”The victim’s father is a poor labourer and has no BPL (Below Poverty Line) card. The family could not afford the ARV,which is why Roshni fell victim to the disease.”
Salat said that Roshni was treated at home and was well for the last three months. All government hospitals charge Rs 100 for an ARV dose,but it is free for those with BPL cards. Generally,five ARV doses are administered to a patient for which Rs 500 is charged,said a hospital official.
Dr Seema Popatiya,Medical Officer with Bhavsinhji Civil Hospital,said,ARV is used as preventive care in dog-bite cases and isn’t a cure for hydrophobia. However,once a patient suffers from hydrophobia,he/she cannot be saved. It is an incurable disease.