At least eight infants have died at the Fakhruddin Ali Ahmed Medical College and Hospital (FAAMC) in Assam’s Barpeta district since Wednesday.
Assam Health Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said about five crib deaths at FAAMC since yesterday, while its principal said three more infants died this evening.
“The (five) infants died due to serious neo-natal medical complications and not due to human negligence. Doctors tried their best to save the newborns and adequate medicines were available in the hospital,” the minister said.
Three more infants, aged between one day and two months, died due to birth asphyxia, FAAMC Principal Dilip Dutta said.
Birth asphyxia is a condition when a baby’s brain and other organs do not get enough oxygen before, during or right after birth.
The infants had low birth weight or were admitted to the hospital in a very critical condition at a very late stage, Dutta said.
Among the deceased infants, eight were male and one female.
“I have talked to the doctors concerned and they have categorically said that the infants could not be saved in spite of their best possible care,” the minister said.
These mortalities are related to purely critical nature of the case like age of the mother or weight of the baby, Sarma said.
The minister ordered an inquiry into the crib deaths by the Director of Medical education who visited the hospital along with consultants from UNICEF to audit the deaths.
An expert team of doctors has been called from Guwahati Medical College and Hospital to support the doctors at FAAMC, Dutta said.