NHRC notices to the Delhi Government and the Union Health Secretary over the death of a young patient due to denial of proper treatment at different Government Hospitals in the National Capital (19.06.2017)

New Delhi, 19th June, 2017

The National Human Rights Commission has issued notices to the Chief Secretary, Government of NCT of Delhi and the Secretary, Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare calling for a detailed report about the allegations in a media report that a 22 year old young man, suffering from chest pain and breathlessness and was not provided treatment by the doctors at different government hospitals in Delhi. They have been given four weeks to respond.

Expressing serious concern over the incident, the Commission has observed how it is painful to know that a person who is timely taken to the nearby hospital is not attended by the doctors even in the National Capital. Instead, he is referred to the other hospital, every time. The Rajiv Gandhi Hospital is a super specialty hospital of Delhi. It is not understandable that the doctors were not available at such a well equipped hospital.
The contents of the news report, carried on the 17th June, 2017 are indicative of lack of sensitivity towards saving a human life on the part of the doctors of the government run hospitals, who were not able to provide life saving medical treatment to the patient. They only referred the patient to the other hospital. It is apparent that a precious human life could not be saved as the patient was not attended by the doctors and he was forced to travel from one hospital to the other, in a deteriorating condition. Therefore, if the contents of the news report are true, this is a case of sheer negligence by the doctors, amounting to violation of Right to Life and Medical Care of the deceased young man.

The news item reveals that the victim, an autorickshaw driver by profession, complained of pain in chest in the afternoon of 12.06.2017, coupled with difficulty in breathing. An ambulance was called by the family and he was taken to the Hedgewar Hospital where he was administered some glucose bottles and was referred to the Guru Teg Bahadur Hospital, Delhi.

At the GTB hospital, the patient was kept in the Emergency Ward for three hours but no medical treatment was provided to him. The brother of the patient again, called the police by dialing number 100, the patient was admitted in the hospital but after sometime, he was referred to Rajiv Gandhi Hospital at Tahirpur, Delhi, where he was taken by the family members, in the late night. Here too, he was kept for four hours and later it was told to the family of the victim that the doctors are not available. The patient was again referred to the Safdarjung Hospital where he could not reach and died on the way to hospital.
The family members of the victim have alleged that they took the patient to the hospital well in time, even then, the doctors instead of providing treatment, kept on referring him from one hospital to the other. They have alleged that had the treatment been provided by the doctors, in time, the life of the victim could be saved.