Woman pregnant with twins dies, relatives allege medical negligence, doctors deny

APWWS seeks inquiry by govt

Staff Reporter

ITANAGAR, Sep 28: A woman pregnant with twins died on Monday morning while on the way to the  Tomo Riba Institute of Health & Medical Sciences (TRIHMS) in Naharlagun.

The woman had been taken to two hospitals in Itanagar before being taken to the TRIHMS.

The deceased, identified as Desu Pertin Jerang, passed away at around 9:30 am. She was reportedly suspected of having antepartum haemorrhage, as she had been bleeding continuously since 3:30 am.

The husband and relatives of the deceased blamed senior gynaecologist at the RK Mission Hospital (RKMH), Itanagar, Dr Posting Bayang and the staff of Heema Hospital for Jerang’s death, accusing them of sheer negligence.

“Serious bleeding started around 3 am in the morning today. I called Dr Posting Bayang many a time at around 5.40 am, but did not get response. Left with no option, we took the patient to Heema Hospital, but we were told that there was no doctor. So we went to RKMH and requested the emergency doctor to attend to her as she was continuously bleeding,” claimed Tami Pangu, a relative of the deceased.

“In the meantime, I again called Dr Bayang and he picked up the call and asked us to take the patient to Heema Hospital. The hospital’s staff refused to admit the patient. When I told them that we were referred by Dr Bayang, they asked us to get the patient antigen tested. After that, they told us that there was no doctor,” Pangu went on to claim.

“Just because of the negligence of the doctor and Heema Hospital staffers, we lost three members of our family today. We call it a murder. The government should take action against the erring officers,” Pangu said.

“They could have asked us straight to go to the TRIHMS. Had we not wasted our valuable time transporting the patient back and forth, we could have saved my wife. This should not be repeated in the future,” said the grief-stricken husband, Talak Jerang.

Meanwhile, Dr Bayang denied the allegation of negligence. He stated that the patient first came to him on 18 September, when he referred her to Dr Jomson Bagra at Niba Hospital, Papu Nallah, as the RKMH was closed.

“This morning I got a missed call and message from the patient’s relative, informing that the patient was in a serious condition. I suggested to them to go to the TRIHMS or Heema Hospital, if Heema was ready to admit,” Dr Bayang claimed.

On the allegation of not responding to the phone calls, he said he was not on on-call duty. “However, as soon as I saw the missed call and message, I responded and referred the patient to the TRIHMS as she required multidisciplinary treatment,” he said.

Dr Bayang said he was attending to a complicated delivery case of his colleague’s patient in the labour room when the patient’s relative called him. “After knowing that the patient had been taken to Heema Hospital, I immediately referred the patient to the TRIHMS and informed the doctor colleague at the TRIHMS about the seriousness of the patient as she required multidisciplinary treatment,” he said.

On being contacted, Dr Bagra defended Dr Bayang and stated that, after examining the seriousness of the patient’s health, Dr Bayang had referred her to the TRIHMS. Dr Bagra also claimed that the patient was having a respiratory issue when Dr Bayang had referred her to him on 18 September at Niba Hospital.

“We are deeply shocked and sorry for the unfortunate loss of three lives. However, the word ‘negligence’ is being used here. This is very wrong. If Dr Bayang was at all negligent, he wouldn’t have attended to the complicated delivery case at Heema,” Dr Bagra said.

He also appealed to the media to be responsible while reporting sensitive issues, adding that Dr Bayang’s image was unnecessarily tarnished on social media.

APWWS mourns death, seeks inquiry

The Arunachal Pradesh Women’s Welfare Society (APWWS) expressed shock and sorrow over the death of the pregnant woman and her unborn twins, and urged the state government to initiate an inquiry into the deaths, which it said appeared to be a case of medical negligence.

“It is unacceptable that women continue to die in childbirth due to lack of health facility,” the APWWS stated in a release.

It said adequate compensation should be paid to the bereaved family by the hospital authorities.

The society also requested the health department to ensure that such tragic incidents do not recur.

“Maternity health needs to be looked into, as many pregnant women have not been able to access medical facility on time due to the Covid-19 pandemic leading to closure of hospitals time and again in the capital region,” it said.