Six days after a three-month-old child suffered burn injuries in the paediatric intensive care unit (ICU) of KEM hospital following a suspected short-circuit in electrocardiogram nodes, an FIR was registered by his father at Bhoiwada police station Wednesday.
The child, Prince, had suffered 18-20 per cent burns in the incident and his left upper arm was amputated Monday after doctors found blood flow to his half-charred limb was blocked leading to ischaemia.
Pannelal Rajbhar, the child’s father, said that initially he was not sure of what legal course to take. “We didn’t want our son’s treatment to be hampered. But the hospital dean was not reachable and I realised we need justice for our baby.”
Earlier, hospital dean Dr Hemant Deshmukh had told The Indian Express that the child had suffered 18-20 per cent burns on his scalp, left arm and shoulder in the November 7 incident, but his condition was stable. On Wednesday, Dr Deshmukh said the child’s blood pressure and heart rate was stable and he did not require ventilator support. “There is no bleeding from the wound, the child is conscious and moving about after the surgical procedure to amputate his limb,” he said.
Meanwhile, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation has initiated an inquiry into the incident. According to civic officials, a two-member committee, led by Dr RN Bharmal, the head of all civic tertiary care hospitals, has recorded statements of more than 20 doctors, nurses, staffers and eyewitnesses. “We will submit the report in three days,” Dr Bharmal said. He added that they will be looking at medical negligence, if any, on part of the Parel-based hospital.
The panel also comprises chief engineer of mechanical and electrical (M&E) department.
Senior Inspector Vinod Kamble of Bhoiwada police station said they were waiting for the BMC report before proceeding with the investigation further. Police said the FIR has been registered against unknown persons for medical negligence.
Amey Ghole, BMC’s health committee chairman, said he has urged the municipal commissioner to provide compensation to the child’s family. “I have also asked the hospital to wave off all expenditure related to treatment,” he said.
Rajbhar, who has recorded his statement with police already, said he had lost his job as he has been looking after his first-born in hospital since last week. The family, native of a village at Azamgarh in Uttar Pradesh, came to Mumbai for Prince’s treatment after the child was detected with a congenital heart defect. “We could not afford shelter and hospital in Varanasi. So, we decided to come to Mumbai where my brother-in-law lives,” he said.
The child’s mother, Sandhya, said they were waiting for Prince’s discharge. The couple said they were forced to agree to amputate their son’s limb as no other option was left.