Relatives of patients at the hospital alleged that more patients had lost their lives, than was being claimed by authorities.

A collage of the board outside King Koti hospital and a photo of oxygen being refilled from the tankerBy arrangement
news Coronavirus Monday, May 10, 2021 - 09:22

Three people lost their lives in Hyderabad’s district hospital in King Koti on Sunday evening after a tanker carrying oxygen arrived late to the hospital. The incident took place between 4 pm and 5 pm on Sunday evening. Speaking to TNM, the Superintendent of the King Koti hospital, Dr Rajendranath, confirmed that three people had lost their lives due to the delay. 

“The tanker carrying oxygen arrived late to the hospital. In the meantime, we provided oxygen from the buffer stock. Oxygen cylinders and oxygen concentrators were provided to the patients as the oxygen flow reduced for a brief period. When the filling of the oxygen was happening for around 30 mins, the flow of oxygen had reduced. Three patients in the ICU died during this period. The deaths may not be totally due to the gap of oxygen supply,” Rajendranath said.

Speaking about the delay in the tanker’s arrival, the Superintendent said, “The company sending the oxygen delayed. The tanker started on time but got delayed. They know everything about the situation here, and they need to monitor. They know how the oxygen levels are going down and they know the tank is getting empty.”

According to the hospital, after the tanker arrived, the refilling took place immediately. But it usually takes some time for the oxygen pressure to be reinstated in the pipeline. For around 30 minutes, oxygen was provided at low pressure to the patients.

According to a relative of a patient who died in the hospital, more people lost their lives due to the delay of the oxygen tanker than was being claimed by authorities. The bystander, who lost his wife, said, “My wife was doing well and two of my daughters had come to the hospital as it was Sunday. She was happily sitting with all of us. Suddenly the oxygen supply stopped and for around 35 minutes it wasn’t available. My wife died gasping for breath. The doctor who came said there was an issue with the pipe supplying oxygen. Including my wife, I saw six people lose their lives inside the ward. When this happened, I ran around looking for a doctor and I noticed people gasping for breath.”

The man also claimed that a similar incident happened a few days ago. “This happened a few days back too. For around two minutes, the oxygen supply weaned, but the normal flow was reinstated immediately and hence they managed to recover,” he said.

“The lives have been lost due to the negligence of the hospital. My house is ruined now with my wife’s death. I have three daughters and one son. The government has given facilities, made big hospitals but what’s the point if they can’t provide something as basic as this?” the heartbroken man questioned.

The BJP unit of the state condemned the incident citing media reports to claim that seven people lost their lives in the incident. K Krishna Saagar Rao, Chief Spokesperson of the BJP said, “CM KCR led state government's senior officials are busy taking photographs with oxygen tankers, air force planes and circulating them on social media. COVID-19 patients in the state are dying due to criminal negligence and utter incompetence of these officers, who are failing in planning logistics and co-ordinating the arriving oxygen tankers from other states.”

“While medical oxygen shortage is felt across the nation with an unprecedented spike in demand, the TRS government has failed to ensure that logistics are planned in advance, to get the oxygen trucks in time to the hospitals. Telangana state government officials who are responsible to coordinate the oxygen trucks arriving to replenish oxygen stocks have miserably failed in their duty, and it has cost seven lives and grievous internal injuries to many patients. KCR who is also holding the portfolio of the Health Minister should take full responsibility for these deaths. BJP demands suitable compensation to these patients by the state government, as they died due to official negligence,” he added.

READ: Hyderabad church sets up 300-bed free COVID-19 facility for poor patients

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