Patients allege negligence in treatment
Authorities deny charges
Mostari Begum was admitted to the city’s high-end Labaid Hospital with severe abdomen and chest pain on September 16 in 2004. The on-duty doctor diagnosed her illness as acidity and referred her to another hospital.Physicians there carried out an electrocardiogram (ECG) on her and found she suffered a massive heart attack. Unfortunately for her, Mostari was
again whisked to Labaid Cardiac Hospital where doctors attended to her at 12 o’clock next day. Mostari Begum breathed her last breath that night.Her son Mushfique Ahmed blames it on the negligence of doctors. “Despite our financial ability and the hospital’s latest equipment for primary angioplasty, my mother had to meet such a death only for the negligence of the hospital authorities”, he complained at a press conference at National Press Club yesterday.Other family members complained about ‘wrong treatment’ and misbehaviour of the Labaid authorities and said they are making money through holding patients as hostages.Mushfique Ahmed has brought the issue to court.Advocate Idris of Bhola was admitted to Labaid Cardiac Hospital on May 8 last year and had an angiogram there. He, however, developed breathing difficulties as soon as he was taken to coronary care unit (CCU). He died at 3:00pm at the angiogram room. Though the relatives made repeated enquiries about the patient, doctors informed them of his death at 11:00pm.The body had shown all signs of rigour mortise by that time. Still, the authorities did not hand it over to the relatives until hospital bills were paid.The relatives said they collected the compact disk (CD) of angioplasty and showed it to other experts who said the attending doctors at Labaid injured the patient’s blood vessels while trying to insert a ring there, resulting in blood clogging round his heart.”Attracted by Labaid’s glossy advertisements in newspapers, I got admitted to Labaid Hospital after valve replacement in my heart. After an echocardiogram, they told me I had had a cardiac arrest and that all the valves of my heart had blockades even though I did not have any chest pain or respiratory problems”, said Enayet Hossain Dulal at the press conference.He said he consulted another cardiologist who told him that he did not suffer any cardiac arrest and that none of his valves were blocked. “The doctor just gave me a simple medicine,” Dulal said, who is now living a healthy life.It was alleged at the press conference that the hospital authorities took advance money from a patient for angiogram, only to tell him later that he need not go through it.”My father’s death certificate said he had tuberculosis, but they did not hand in the papers despite our repeated requests. They also misbehaved themselves,” said Anwar Parvez.He complained that his elder brother, who is a teacher at North South University, was slapped in the face by a security guard on order from the hospital’s general manager Imran Chowdhury because the academic protested at the presence of a huge crowd at the coronary care unit.Imran Chowdhury, however, denied the allegation, saying no such incident occurred at the hospital.”The allegations of keeping patients as hostages are also untrue because Labaid is the only private-sector hospital that takes patients without any deposit”, Imran said, adding that many patients still owe the hospital treatment bills.Denying the complaints about wrong treatment, he said accident may occur everywhere, anytime. He said if the patients think they have been subject to wrong treatment, they could seek legal recourse.The speakers at the press conference said though Labaid has been continuing ‘deception’ and many newspapers have published reports for it, no action has been taken against the hospital.They called on the caretaker government to take necessary steps against such hospitals and their physicians.Dr Mehnaz Ahmed, head of geriatric department at New York City’s Brookline Hospital, Iqbal Hossain, Towfiq Mahmud, Shafiqul Islam and Tanvir Imam, among others, were present at the press conference.They said they either lost family members or had to incur financial losses at Labaid Hospital.