Turned away by five hospitals, another dialysis patient dies

Updated: May 16, 2020, 07:05 IST | Shirish Vaktania | Mumbai

While family alleges negligence, hospitals say no place will admit patients due to COVID fears

Kaushik Roy with wife Jyoti
Kaushik Roy with wife Jyoti

Despite directives from the state government to not turn away dialysis patients, hospitals continue to refuse treatment to them. A 47-year-old Bhayandar resident died on Thursday after five hospitals refused to give him dialysis over COVID-19 fears.

Kaushik Roy, residing at Cabin Road in Bhayandar East, had been receiving dialysis for a year at KKasturi Medicare. His wife Jyoti said, "My husband needed dialysis every alternate day. However, last week, after getting dialysis at KKasturi hospital, he suffered a negative reaction. We decided to take him to another hospital. On Thursday morning, his health was not good and we rushed him to five different hospitals in the area. Everyone refused to treat him. My husband died due to lack of dialysis."

Jyoti first took her husband to Bhaktivedanta Hospital, then PV Doshi Hospital, then Manav Kalyan Kendra Hospital, then Orbit Hospital and then to Thunga, which said he had died and advised her to get a death certificate from KKasturi, where he was being treated earlier.

Dr Rajeev Agarwal medical director of KKasturi, said, "The family chose to discontinue dialysis with us four days ago. They said our dialysis is not suitable for him. But they did not book another centre. We did not refuse dialysis, the family did not come to us."

Jaswanti Shah
Kaushik and Jyoti Roy

Dr Agarwal added, "Other hospitals are not taking a risk. Roy was unknown to other hospitals. No hospital will take a patient without knowing their complete history."

What hospitals say

"We refused to admit Roy as our dialysis machines have not been working for two months. The machines have been shut for maintenance work. We advised his family to take him to another hospital as he was critical," officials from the Mira-Bhayandar-based Orbit Hospital said.

Dr Illa Ghosh of Bhaktivedanta hospital said that their associate hospital, PV Doshi is only treating Coronavirus patients. "If that is where Roy went, he would have been denied admission as no outside patients are allowed. At Bhaktivendanta, we are taking new patients. I will personally check why Roy was not admitted."

Dr Ghosh later added that the hospital is keeping a list of patients who are enquiring about admission and of those who are being admitted too. As such, Bhaktivedanta did not find Kaushik Roy's details in their records. When asked about this, Jyoti said that they were refused entry at the gate of the hospital's dialysis centre itself.

While Manav Kalyan Kendra Hospital refused to comment, officials from Thunga Hospital said, "We checked the patient but he was dead. We advised the family to take his death certificate from the hospital where he was taking dialysis earlier."

"I lost my husband. Had my husband been given dialysis, he could have been saved. It is due to the negligence of all hospitals that he has died. I appeal to the government to stop these things from happening to other patients," Jyoti said.

Saved in the nick of time

An 85-year-old dialysis patient was saved in the nick of time after she suffered a seizure at her Malad home on Thursday night. Jaswanti Shah only needed oxygen, a bottle of glucose and sodium to treat her, but four hospitals refused to treat her, until the fifth one, Dr. Anirudh Ambekar (Life Line Medicare Hospital) in Goregaon admitted her and saved her life.

Jaswanti Shah

Shah's family said that Cooper hospital, Suchak Hospital, Sahyadri Hospital and Siddharth Hospital refused to treat Shah.

Shah's grandaughter Deoanshi said, "My grandmother suffered a seizure at 2.30 am. Local doctors refused to come home and treat her. Finally, our family doctor said over video call that she is having a seizure and said she needs oxygen, glucose and sodium."

"We rushed her to four hospitals but none treated her. I requested them and told them her temperature has reached 96°C, but they refused due to Coronavirus fears. Finally, Life Line Medicare Hospital saved her. I request all doctors and hospitals to understand that not everyone is suffering from Coronavirus," Deoanshi said.

When the family called for an ambulance, the service providers were ready to take her but no hospital would accept her. "They said they will only drop her to a hospital but not bring her home," Deoanshi added.

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