Botched Tubectomy at Govt Camp Kills 11

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  • Bungled sterilization at a government health camp in Kanan Pendari village in Bilaspur district of Chhattisgarh triggered the worst-ever medical tragedy in the state.
  • Eleven women died, seven are battling for life and at least 40 are in shock and trauma triggered by loss of blood.
  • As many as 83 tubectomy operations were performed in three-and-a-half hours, with one doctor and his attendant spending, on an average, two minutes per surgery .
  • The surgeries began at 1.30pm on Saturday and lasted till 5pm.
  • Medical officer at the Takhatpur primary health centre Dr Katalam Singh Dhurve said Dr R K Gupta conducted the surgeries with just one laparoscopy machine.
  • An FIR has been filed against Gupta in the police station.
  • Most of the women complained of severe abdominal pain and had to be admitted to hospitals on Sunday
  • The first fatality occurred on Monday morning.
  • Ten more women died by Tuesday .
  • The surgeries are believed to have triggered hypovolemic shocks in the women, leading to heavy blood and fluid loss disabling the heart from pumping enough blood.
  • Incidentally, Takhatpur block in Kanan Pendari, where the camp was held, is just 10km from Bilaspur town, which is state health minister Amar Agarwal's constituency.
  • The village has a population mostly of OBCs and dalits.
  • It was found that nearly 60 of the 83 women who underwent tubectomies at the government medical camp in Kanan Pendari village had to be admitted to hospitals a day after.
  • The surgeries were performed at the Nemi Chand Jain Cancer Research Centre in Takhatpur, which is shut since April.
  • A private enterprise, the research centre was slated to reopen as an Ayurvedic college soon.
  • Although the hospital has no equipment or staff, save a caretaker and two guards, the health department has used it thrice for setting up sterilization camps since September.
  • Probe panels will investigate whether the operation theatres were sterilized before surgeries.
  • The 11 deaths are spread across hospitals in Bilaspur, both private and government, with Apollo and district hospitals reporting three deaths each.
  • While this correspondent couldn’t enter the operation theatre at Nemi Chand Jain Cancer Research Centre, its doors were rusted and on the verge of falling off.
  • There were no electrical fittings barring a tubelight in the corridor leading to the OT.
  • The single-storey dilapidated building showed seepage and fungus on the walls.
  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi, away in Myanmar, spoke to Chhattisgarh chief minister Raman Singh on phone and asked him to conduct a detailed investigation into the circumstances that led to the deaths.
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