A pregnant woman in Kerala’s Malappuram district on Sunday lost her unborn twin children after several hospitals refused to treat her, NDTV reported. The woman’s family said she had recovered from Covid-19, and was discharged on September 15, but both private and government hospitals turned her away.

Three hospitals cited that she did not have a RT-PCR (reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction) test to prove that she had tested negative, according to The New Indian Express. NC Shareef, the woman’s husband, made several attempts for about 14 hours to get her hospitalised. Shareef said he travelled between two districts before his wife was admitted to the Kozhikode Medical College.

On Saturday, the woman was first taken to the Manjeri Medical College at 4 am. However, the hospital allegedly said only coronavirus positive cases would be treated there. Although the woman was admitted, the hospital reportedly discharged her saying “she is not in pain”. The hospital also did not accept a negative antigen certificate.

Shareef’s wife was referred to the Kottaparamba government hospital in Kozhikode next, but there was no gynaecologist as they reached past the out patient time slot on Saturday afternoon. The authorities asked the couple to try another medical facility. Meanwhile, Shareef contacted a private hospital at Omassery in Kozhikode, which reports said insisted that a RT-PCR test has to be done before admitting the patient.

Shareef, a journalist, said the tragedy could have been averted if Manjari hospital helped the couple. “I will file a complaint against the Manjeri hospital authorities who refused to treat my wife when she was in pain,” he added.

Kerala Health Minister KK Shailaja has ordered an inquiry and also directed the health secretary to investigate the matter. She called the incident “extremely painful” and promised strict action against those responsible for the deaths.