FORMER UNION minister Harsimrat Kaur Badal on Thursday demanded a high-level inquiry into alleged criminal negligence by the Bathinda Civil Hospital management which resulted in transfusion of HIV+ blood to patients over the last several weeks.
Expressing shock at mismanagement of blood scanning by the hospital, former Harsimrat slammed Punjab Chief Minister Capt Amarinder Singh for “failing to take prompt action in the matter”.
“I demand immediate probe and stern action against all guilty in the hospital management for this criminal act of negligence,” she said.
A team of the Punjab State AIDS Control Society PSACS, while investigating a series of transfusion of HIV+ blood to some patients, found a breach of blood donation norms that occurred over several weeks at the hospital.
Harsimrat slammed the civil surgeon for the “unjustifiable error by hospital management”.
“Atrocious! As is the leader, so are the subjects. What accountability does one expect of officials, when governance is chugging along with the CM himself absent?” she asked.
“Only an independent high-level independent probe can decide how this gross error was allowed to go on for six months, and identify those responsible,” said the former Union minister, demanding that the culprits be held accountable and given exemplary punishment.
The infected blood was likely given to several others besides the three young thalessemic patients, as per media reports, she said.
“It is only justifiable that Capt Amarinder Singh should ensure free testing of all those who took blood from the concerned blood bank and free treatment for each one who will eventually endure the side-effects or the deadly disease due to this act of negligence,” said Harsimrat.
She expressed grave shock to learn that the blood bank had suspended the confirmatory ELISA test of donated blood for six months during renovation of the blood bank building. Meanwhile, the blood was screened by a rapid test kit which is done only in emergencies.
“This is a pittance of an excuse. It is human life at stake here! The hospital could have made alternate arrangements to ensure due protocol was followed,” she added.
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