In an incident that could bring embarrassment to the management of the PMC-run Naidu Hospital, an 18-year-old patient — infected with rabies — has been missing since yesterday morning.
Out of control: Naidu hospital’s superintendent claimed that though a couple of ward boys and a security guard tried to overpower the violent patient, he managed to escape. Pic/Mohan Patil
The patient contracted the disease after sustaining dog bites to his face and right forearm. He is said to hail from Baramati and is believed to be an orphan.
“He was first sent to the Sasoon Hospital. From there he was referred to the Naidu Hospital, as it has a separate ward for rabies patients. He appeared restless and escaped from the hospital around 6 am,” PMC deputy health chief Dr Anjali Sabne said.
“The disease was diagnosed yesterday (Wednesday) at Sasoon Hospital, and was in an early stage. Nobody accompanied the patient. We have registered a police complaint,” said Dr S T Pardeshi, PMC’s acting health chief.
At the time of going to the press, officials from Bundgarden police station had been unable to trace the patient.
When contacted, Naidu Hospital’s Superintendent Dr B M Francis claimed that the on-duty ward boys and a security guard did their best to prevent the patient from escaping.
“Around 6 am, the patient got violent and aggressively pulled out the IV needle. He even broke the saline bottle. Though a couple of ward boys and a security guard tried to overpower him, the patient managed to escape,” Francis said.
He added that the hospital has a separate ward for rabies patients and handles around 20 rabies cases annually.
The initial symptoms of rabies are often vague, and can be easily mistaken for other less serious types of infections. They include:
>> A high temperature of 100.4º F or above
>> Lack of appetite
>> Sore throat
What is rabies?
It is a viral disease that causes acute inflammation of the brain in humans and other warm-blooded animals. The time period between contracting the disease and the appearance of symptoms is usually one to three months. However, it can vary from less than one week to more than one year