Mumbai: Family struggle to get hearse for deceased 11-year-old at KEM hospital
She passed away on Wednesday morning at KEM hospital, but the family's suffering was long from over
For two months, the family of Ayushi Maurya, 11, watched in despair as both her kidneys failed and she spiralled towards death. She passed away on Wednesday morning at KEM hospital, but the family's suffering was long from over.
"We had spent our life savings on her treatment and could not afford to rent a hearse to transport the body home to Boisar, Palghar. The hospital too refused to provide an ambulance, as Boisar is outside BMC limits. We kept running from pillar to post for four hours, which delayed the last rites of the child," said Rajiv Maurya, Ayushi's uncle.
Eventually, social workers arranged for an ambulance and paid for transportation to the family's home. "We arranged for an ambulance for R3,500," said social worker Anil Yadhav.
An official from the BMC health department said, "We lack the facilities to provide ambulance to ferry bodies to neighbouring districts. But there are agencies who do it for free when contacted."
Know your rights
"It is always preferable to transport bodies in a hearse. The government doesn't offer this facility, but there are philanthropic agencies that do transport bodies free of cost, even across districts. Families can fill a form at the hospital to avail of this facility," said Dr Rita Salva, who works with the government to formulate medical emergency services.
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