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Hospital hands over ‘dead’ twins in a packet, one turns out to be alive

The twins were delivered on November 30 and the incident came to light when the maternal grandfather — on the way to the funeral — discovered that one of the newborns was alive.

Written by Kaunain Sheriff M | New Delhi |
Updated: December 2, 2017 8:24:50 am
Max Hospital Shalimar Bagh declares alive baby dead The hospital has initiated an inquiry into the incident and the doctor concerned has been asked to proceed on leave, officials told The Indian Express.

In an alleged case of medical negligence, one of the newborn twins who had been declared dead by Max Hospital in Shalimar Bagh and handed over to the family was found alive while being taken for the last rites. The hospital has initiated an inquiry into the incident and the doctor concerned has been asked to proceed on leave, officials told The Indian Express.

The twins were delivered on November 30 and the incident came to light when the maternal grandfather — on the way to the funeral — discovered that one of the newborns was alive. Sources said the 22-week premature baby continues to be critical and is admitted in a nursing home in Pitampura. The mother, Varsha (20), a resident of Nihal Vihar, continues to be hospitalised at Max Hospital. The father, Ashish, runs a water purifier business.

Hospital officials said the male twin was “unfortunately handed over without any sign of life”, while the female was stillborn. Sources said the doctor had diagnosed the male twin with arrhythmia — a condition in which the heart beats with an irregular rhythm. “Due to arrhythmia, there might have been a lapse in checking the pulse of the newborn. But we need to ascertain the reason behind it,” a source said.

Varsha’s brother-in-law Deepak claimed: “The hospital called us in the morning. They said there is no negligence on their part; instead, a senior hospital official told us it is a ‘medical miracle’. We told them we want an explanation from doctors, but they did not let us talk to them.” He added, “The mother was taken to a local nursing home in Paschim Vihar on November 28. The doctors referred us to Max Hospital. On November 30, her condition deteriorated and doctors said she will have to undergo surgery. At 7:35 am, a female was delivered, and at 7:42 am, a male was delivered. They later told us the female was stillborn, and the male is alive and will be kept under observation.”

“Around 12:30 pm, the maternal grandfather went to inquire about the baby’s condition, and doctors informed him that he had also died. Around 1:15 pm, they handed over the babies in a polythene cover to the father. The father held the female baby, while the grandfather held the male. While taking the babies to the cremation ground, the grandfather noticed some physical movement inside the polythene. He immediately opened the cover and discovered that the baby was still breathing,” Deepak claimed.

“We rushed him to Aggarwal Nursing Home in Pitampura, where doctors medically confirmed the the newborn is still alive and admitted him to the ICU. His condition continues to be critical. Doctors said he had acquired severe infection due to the incident,” Deepak alleged. Max Hospital, meanwhile, said, “It has been brought to our attention that a premature (22 weeks), newborn baby, who is reported to be on life support at a nursing home, was unfortunately handed over without any sign of life by Max Hospital, Shalimar Bagh. This baby was one of the twins delivered on November 30 morning. The other baby was stillborn. We are shaken and concerned at this rare incident. We have initiated a detailed inquiry, pending which, the doctor concerned has been asked to proceed on leave immediately. We are in constant touch with the parents and are providing all the needed support.”

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