Mumbai: Hospitals turn away mother, newborn she gave birth to in train

The boy and his profusely bleeding mother were refused admission by two hospitals in Mulund, including one where she was slated to deliver the child; during the four-hour ordeal, doctors at the hospitals allegedly refused to even clean the baby and agreed to cut the umbilical cord only after much pleading

The next time someone tells Priyanka Mirpagare that the purpose of hospitals and doctors is to save lives, the 24-year-old will scoff at them.

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The newborn and his mother were finally admitted to Rajawadi hospital in Ghatkopar
The newborn and his mother were finally admitted to Rajawadi hospital in Ghatkopar

With good reason. Having delivered a baby in a local train on a rainy Sunday night, with blood steadily oozing out of her, Mirpagare was turned away by two BMC-run hospitals in Mulund, who not only refused to admit her and her newborn son, but hesitated even to cut her umbilical cord.

Doctors at both hospitals even turned a deaf ear to her pleas to at least clean her newborn. Mirpagare and her newborn son was finally admitted to Rajawadi hospital in Ghatkopar only at 2.30 am on Monday, after she had lain bleeding for more than four hours.

Ordeal begins
While speaking to mid-day, Mirpagare said she was pregnant with her second baby and had left her house in Ambivli to go to the Veer Savarkar hospital in Mulund after she began experiencing pain around 9 pm.

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“My mother, Alisha, who works in the housekeeping department in Veer Savarkar hospital, had made arrangements for me to deliver my second baby there. So after I started experiencing pain around 9 pm on Sunday, we decided to get it checked out there.

Near Thane station, however, my baby boy was delivered in the local train with the help of fellow female passengers at 10.10 pm. As the train was pulling out of Mulund station, my mother pulled the chain and called the emergency number 108 for assistance,” said Mirpagare.

“A few railway and police officials arrived and they helped take me to the BMC Maternity Home in Mulund at 10.30 pm. However, the officials there refused to admit my baby and me.

It was only after we made several requests that they even cut the umbilical cord. They refused to even clean my baby and said that since my name was registered at Savarkar hospital, we should go there,” said Mirpagare.

Losing time and blood
Mirpagare said that around 11.15 pm, before they could even enter the hospital, a female doctor started gesturing at them, indicating that she wouldn’t be admitted and that she should go away. “Since my mother works there, she started requesting the doctors to admit me and my baby, because our lives were at risk.

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They wasted 40 minutes, during which my blood was flowing out constantly, and then asked us to go to Rajawadi hospital, claiming they couldn’t treat me as my blood pressure was high,” said Mirpagare.

Four hours later
It was only at 2.30 am on Monday that Mirpagare was finally admitted to Rajawadi hospital, where she and her baby were declared safe. Mulund Station Master M Daniel, whose staff helped Mirpagare, said, “We usually face problems in these kinds of situations.

I got a call from one of my staffers informing me that the 24-year-old had given birth in the train and I instantly asked them to get her admitted. However, in a few minutes, I got a call again that the hospital had refused to admit the profusely bleeding woman.”

Seeking action
“I heaved a sigh of relief only when I found out that the lady and her son were in good health. I spoke to the BMC ward officer the next day and asked her to take action,” said Daniel.

The other side
Sujata Jadhav, a senior medical officer from Veer Savarkar hospital said, “We refused to admit the patient as her blood pressure was high and she was bleeding and we did not have blood bags. We told her family members that it was best for the patient to get her admitted to either the Sion hospital or Rajawadi hospital, but her mother kept arguing with our doctors.”

Deepali Palshikar, medical superintendent of the BMC Maternity Home in Mulund, refused to comment on the issue. When mid-day spoke to Chanda Jadhav, ward officer of D ward, she said that letters had already been dispatched to both facilities, asking for an explanation. Sujata Jadhav from Savarkar hospital said they had received the letter and would reply to it on Thursday.

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