Criminal negligence



A nine-month-old girl passed away after suffering brain damage as she allegedly was administered an excessive dose through injection at a private hospital in Karachi.

The child’s father registered a case against the administration of the hospital located in Gulistan-i-Jauhar. After the alleged overdose, the child had difficulty breathing. According to the FIR, a set of tests revealed that her hands, feet, eyes and mouth were paralysed.

The Sindh government puts a premium on healthcare in the province and has made a significant improvement in this regard. The Sindh of today is different from what it was in the past – especially in health and education sectors.

This is a test case for the provincial government as to how does it handle this criminal act on the part of the hospital. The private hospitals in the country have mushroomed over the years. While they charge exorbitant fees from the hapless patients, there is little regulatory control over them, in particular, when an incident such as this happens. The medical staff concerned as well as the hospital administrations should be held accountable and punished as per the law if found guilty so that no such incident takes place again.

According to the reports, the paramedic who administered the injection was either not qualified to do the job or was negligent in following the Standard Operating Procedure. The way the injection was administered reflects upon the poor oversight, and the training of the medical staff in the country. This case where a precious little life was lost should serve as an opportunity for a thorough investigation through a body comprising professionals from all the concerned departments so that, as the deceased’s crying father pleaded before the television cameras, no one else has to go through the same experience as he did.