In a tragic incident, two people died and 17 were taken ill after they were administered an antibiotic drug at the Rajiv Gandhi Institute of Medical Sciences (RIMS) in Ongole in Andhra Pradesh on Saturday.
A total of 19 women were administered a dose of Ceftriaxone on Friday evening and soon started developing severe reactions to the drug, administered via an injection.
Three of the worst affected cases were rushed to the King George Hospital in Visakhapatnam.
However, according to media reports, E Sailaja (24) from Kasipuram village in Kotturu manual and S Anitha (38), from Palasa passed away on Saturday morning. The third woman, D Santhamma, a resident of Ichchapuram, is out of danger and recovering.
The remaining 17 women were kept under observation in the ICU at RIMS.
Ten of the 17 patients who were administered the drug had mild reactions and are being treated at the womenâ€™s ward in the hospital.
â€śA total of 19 victims had vomiting, diarrhoea, headache, a rise in Blood Pressure and breathing problems immediately after being administered the dose,â€ť Dr Appalanaidu, resident medical officer (RMO), RIMS told The New Indian Express.
â€śAfter they showed negative reactions, we administered an antidote to all 19, moved seven to our intensive care unit and sent three to KGH as their health was deteriorating rapidly. Ten women continue to be treated at the womenâ€™s ward as their condition is improving,â€ť he added.
Sailaja was admitted to RIMS on Friday as she was suffering from fever and Anitha was hospitalised on July 31 with roughly the same symptoms. Though Ceftriaxone was administered to people in other wards on the same day, none of them showed any reactions, officials observed.
The batch of medicine administered to the victims were manufactured only in March this year and had an expiry date until February 2020, media reports added.
Meanwhile, the Medical college director, Dr Krishna Veni, has ordered an enquiry into the incident and has already informed Directorate of Medical and Health officials and other higher officials. The administration of the drug has been stopped at all wards in the hospital following the incident.
A Krishna, Srikakulam drug inspector, rushed to RIMS on Saturday and spoke to the doctors and nursing staff as well and suspected that the problem may have been either in the preparation of the injections using diluents or a particular pack of medicine. Samples have been sent to Kolkata for a laboratory test.