After a hospital in New Delhi allegedly declared a baby born alive dead, the Indian Medical Association released an advisory on how to certify death in cases of hypothermia.

Patients should not be declared death under conditions of hypothermia, the advisory said.

Hypothermia takes place when the body loses heat faster than it can produce heat, causing a dangerously low body temperature. The Indian Medical Association’s advisory said, “It is important to recognise hypothermia so that a patient can be revived using all resuscitative measures, including rewarming and CPR.”

The IMA said, “In children, in cases of severe hypothermia, the body metabolism is suspended, and this may may protect against hypoxia (when the body is deprived of adequate oxygen).” It said that in such cases, patients can be revived even within nine hours. The advisory goes on to list the ways in which such patients can be revived.

The case

The Delhi Police on Friday registered a case of attempt to commit culpable homicide against a private hospital that declared a newborn dead. He was found alive later.

The baby and his twin sister were born at Max Hospital in Shalimar Bagh on Thursday morning. Their mother had been brought to the hospital from a nursing home in Paschim Vihar.

After she gave birth to a boy and a girl, the family was informed that their twins were stillborn. The family has alleged that the babies were handed to them in a plastic bag. When the parents were on their way to a crematorium to perform their last rites, they found that the boy was still alive. The surviving twin is being treated at a nursing home in Pitampura.