Uttar Pradesh Police are investigating the deaths of 49 children in the span of 30 days at a government hospital in Farrukhabad. The deaths took place between July 21 and August 20 in the Sick Newborn Care Unit of the Ram Manohar Lohia Hospital. Some reports alleged that the infants died because of lack of oxygen supply at the facility.
Superintendent of Police of Farrukhabad Dayanand Misra told Scroll.in that 15 of the 49 children who were reported dead were stillborn, and that the committee investigating the deaths found that doctors had been negligent.
“A case has been registered against the chief medical officer, the chief medical superintendent and some doctors,” Misra told ANI. “Further action will be taken as the investigation proceeds.”
District Magistrate Ravindra Kumar has ordered an inquiry into the deaths, CNN News18 reported. He said the parents of the infants who died have claimed that doctors did not use any oxygen tubes. The First Information Report filed accuses the doctors of negligence.
Now, another expert committee is being set up to investigate the case further.
An initial investigation attributed the deaths to Perinatal Asphyxia, which is a medical condition that causes oxygen deprivation. The condition is treated by removing obstructions to the babies’ airways and sometimes putting them on respirators or oxygen tanks.
At least 63 children had died at the Baba Raghav Das Medical College and Hospital in Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Adityanath’s constituency of Gorakhpur between August 7 and August 11.