63 deaths in 6 days at UP hospital; CM Yogi calls emergency meeting

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Disruption in the supply of liquid oxygen claimed lives of two more children on Saturday.

Gorakhpur: Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath has called an emergency meeting on Saturday following the tragic deaths of over 60 children at Gorakhpur’s Baba Raghav Das Medical College’s hospital due to alleged disruption in the supply of liquid oxygen.

Health Minister Siddharth Nath Singh and Minister for Medical Education Ashutosh Tandon will visit Gorakhpur after meeting the chief minister.

The shortage of oxygen led to the encephalitis, which is a sudden onset inflammation of the brain, following which the children died. On Friday, reports said that 30 children lost their lives in two days.

Three more children, including an 11-year-old suffering from Encephalitis, died on Saturday.

According to a report in The Indian Express, disruption in the supply of liquid oxygen claimed lives of nine children on Monday, 12 on Tuesday, nine on Wednesday, 23 on Thursday and seven on Friday.

The families of the children have claimed that the doctors were not treating them well and the hospital was not even providing the medicines which were required for the treatment.

As per the locals, though the hospital is supposed to provide free medical assistance, neither there is proper medical facility available nor are the patients provided free medicines.

Earlier on Friday, it was reported that as many as 30 children lost their lives due to encephalitis in a span of 48 hours at the hospital.

Gorakhpur DM Rajeev Rautela said that the cause of the deaths at the BRD Hospital was the disruption in the supply of liquid oxygen and has further appealed to the suppliers to not cut the supply henceforth.

Following this reports, the Uttar Pradesh Government jumped in defence of the medical college, while also assuring that the District Magistrate has ordered a magisterial inquiry into the incident and the report will be out in 24 hours.

“There haven’t been any deaths due to lack of oxygen supply. And ‘only’ seven children have died today. Today three deaths happened in Neonatal ICU, two due to Acute Encephalitis Syndrome (AES) and two due to Non-AES,” UP Medical Education Minister Ashutosh Tondon said.

“The District Magistrate has ordered a magisterial inquiry into the incident. The report will be out in 24 hours,” he added.

He further said that the arrangement of oxygen cylinders was duly made and a strict action will be taken against those responsible for the mishap.

Meanwhile, according to data procured from the BRD hospital, in past five days – from August 7 to August 11, a total of 60 deaths have occurred in the hospital.

The procured data also shows the number of oxygen cylinders sent for refilling each day, showing a clear shortage of liquid oxygen in the hospital.

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