Sixty-one children, most of them newborns, have died in the last 72 hours at Gorakhpur’s BRD Medical College, triggering panic in the hospital. It is the same hospital where 70 infant deaths were reported three weeks ago, from various causes including oxygen shortage.
The latest deaths took place on account of several ailments, including encephalitis, health complexities in newborns, pneumonia, sepsis etc, whose patients have been flooding the hospital, leading to overcrowding. On August 27, 28 and 29, 61 deaths were recorded at the hospital — 11 in the encephalitis ward, 25 in neonatal intensive care unit (NNICU) and another 25 in the general pediatric ward.
Moreover, reports also suggest that there has been considerable amount of overcrowding in the hospital since the past two days, thus aggravating the situation. Local doctors fear the number of deaths will increase in upcoming days due to heavy rainfall and water-logging, floods – all factors which add to the spread of the deadly Japanese Encephalitis virus.
The hospital, the biggest in UP CM Yogi Adityanath's home base Gorakhpur, sees hundreds of patients from neighbouring Bihar, other districts of Uttar Pradesh and even Nepal. Earlier, the hospital allegedly faced charges of negligence in the supply of liquid oxygen leading to death of more than 60 infants.
An FIR was registered against the suspended principal of the BRD Medical College, Dr Rajiv Misra, along with six other hospital personnel. Further, he along with his wife were taken into custody on Tuesday by Uttar Pradesh's Special Task Force (STF) for questioning in connection with the death of 60 children within a span of 48 hours at the hospital.