Avoidable death

June 13, 2019

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MY wife, Naseem, is no more with us in this world. She was barely 40 years old and had gone to the Sobhraj Maternity Hospital for a routine antenatal check up.

She was due for a caesarean delivery back in May. On a previous visit to the doctor she was advised to come for a follow-up.

On her arrival, they checked her blood pressure and found it to be 160/100 with some severe swelling. Despite her condition, they did not examine her further and was told to go home and come back the following week.

By the time of her next visit, she had completed 37 weeks of her pregnancy and had been complaining about labour pains. The on-duty doctor, however, refused to admit her.

I took her back home that day but brought her back a few hours later as she had severe pains and was bleeding. She was admitted in a conscious and relatively stable condition. After an emergency surgery at the Sobhraj ER, she gave birth to a still child. By 9.15am that day, the surgeon had also removed my wife’s uterus (without seeking prior permission).

During the surgery, my wife went into a coma and was transferred to Abbasi Shaheed Hospital, where she later died.

I feel that my wife’s life and that of my child could have been saved if the on-duty doctor (from April) had taken my wife’s concerns seriously.

I have written to the mayor and chief minister to take steps to avoid these incidents in the future but have received no response.

Now, I am alone with two children…where should we go to seek justice?

Ejaz Ahmed
Karachi

Published in Dawn, June 13th, 2019