KASUR: The woman who had died at the Jinnah Hospital unattended had also visited the Kasur District Headquarters hospital prior to visiting Lahore hospitals, a CCTV footage shows.

The chilling footage shows Zahra Bibi, 60, of Tibbi Kambovan, was brought to the hospital on Jan 1 by his son, Muhammad Umor.

The three members of the Chief Minister’s Inspection Team (CIMT) probing into the woman’s death visited the hospital on Friday and retrieved the footage with the help of Mr Umor.

Local health authorities had earlier denied that Zohra Bibi ever visited the hospital. The family, however, insisted the elderly woman had been refused treatment at the hospital on Sunday (Jan 1), a lackluster day at the hospital when most of the doctors are on day off.

The team also visited the house of Zohra Bibi whose death on the bare floor of the state-run hospital had put the Shahbaz government under scathing criticism.

The woman, according to the family, had been refused treatment at four public hospitals -- the Kasur DHQ Hospital, the Punjab Institute of Cardiology, Services Hospital and the Jinnah Hospital -- one after in another in few hours.

Zohra Bibi, the wife of a milkman, was suffering from urinary tract complications. The family said the Jinnah Hospital had refused to admit her citing the shortage of beds.

The CIMT saved the footage in an USB and left Kasur for Lahore with Mr Umor.

The incident speaks volume for the affairs of the DHQ Hospital which has seen three visits by Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharfi in 2016. The visit cost the jobs of two executive district officers, as many medical superintendents and deputy superintendents, one medical officer, one pharmacist, one store keeper, four nurses and two head nurses over inefficiency.

The officials, however, were all back to the work after a few months of their suspension from the job.

Anjuman Shehrian President Chaudhry Muhammad Iqbal sees the repeat of the events this time too.

“Suspension of the negligent officials is no solution as they get salaries for months, work at private hospitals, and, are restored after two or months,” he said.

He suggested strict punishment for negligent medical staff to set an example for others.

Published in Dawn, January 8th, 2017

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