Telangana HC seeks report on death of pregnant woman

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Hyderabad: The Telangana High Court on Monday sought a report from the state government over the death of a pregnant woman, who passed away inside an ambulance after running around several private hospitals, which refused her admission suspecting her to be COVID-19 positive.

The court took serious note of the incident which occurred in Hyderabad on May 14 and made it clear that hospitals can’t insist on RT-PCR test report for admission of a patient.

Pavani, 22, died in the ambulance along with the unborn child near the government-run Women’s Hospital in Koti, where she was heading after visiting around five hospitals.

Incidentally, Pavani, a resident of Mallapur in the city, was not COVID-19 positive.

On May 14, the eight-month pregnant woman felt unwell and her parents took her to a hospital, which directed her to another hospital citing lack of beds.

The hapless woman visited at least five hospitals. While some insisted that she should produce a RT-PCR test report, others cited lack of beds or ventilators.

The ordeal of Pavani’s family did not end with her death. Various crematoriums also refused to perform the last rites, telling her family members that cremating her without separating the unborn child will bring bad omen.

The last rites could be performed only the next day after the foetus was reportedly removed.

The in-charge collector of Medchal Malkajgiri district, Swetha Mohanty, had ordered an inquiry into the woman’s death.

Health department officials conducted an inquiry and found that negligence by the private hospitals led to Pavani’s death. Doctors at these hospitals did not even examine the patient.