NHRC notice to the Chairman, BHEL and Medical Superintendent, BHEL hospital, Haridwar over reports of a patient declared dead and sent to mortuary even as he was alive (22.01.2018)

PRESS RELEASE

New Delhi, 22nd January, 2018
The National Human Rights Commission, NHRC has taken suo motu cognizance of media reports that in Haridwar, Uttarakhand a patient declared dead by doctors at a state-owned hospital and shifted into mortuary was, allegedly, alive for the next eight hours, an autopsy conducted on the body the next day revealed.
The Commission has issued a notice to the Chairman, Bharat Heavy Electricals Limited and the Medical Superintendent of the BHEL Hospital, Haridwar calling for a detailed report, within six weeks along with action taken against the guilty doctors and relief provided to the family of the deceased.
The Commission has observed that, as reported, declaring a person dead, who is still alive and sending him to the mortuary is the worst example of the negligence committed by the doctors of a state-owned hospital. It is possible that by providing appropriate treatment in time, the life of the deceased could be saved. A precious human life has been lost. The inhuman act done by the doctors has violated the right to life and health care of the deceased.
According to the media reports, carried on the 20th January, 2018, a 44 year old employee of the Bharat Heavy Electricals Limited (BHEL) was rushed to the BHEL hospital after complaining of chest pain and collapsing on the 12th January, 2018. He was declared dead by the doctors at 11.30 pm and his body was shifted to the mortuary.
The next day, a post-mortem was conducted on the body of the deceased, during which it was revealed that his death occurred about six hours before the postmortem i.e. at around 8.00 am-a gap of more than 8 hours after the patient was declared dead. The brother of the deceased has lodged a complaint against the negligence committed by the doctors, leading to death of his brother. Reportedly, on Friday the Chief Medical Officer ordered a probe into the incident after police forwarded a complaint filed by the victim's kin.
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