Rat attack on patient: Action against two hospital employees

January 12th, 2012 - 7:17 pm ICT by IANS  

Jodhpur, Jan 12 (IANS) Authorities at a Rajasthan government hospital removed from duty two employees for negligence over an incident in which rats allegedly nibbled on the ears, nose, lips and cheeks of a paralysed patient early this week, an official said Thursday.

The 70-year-old paralysed man on ventilator in the intensive care unit (ICU) was allegedly attacked by rats early Tuesday at the Mathura Das Mathur Hospital while the staff was asleep, hospital sources said.

“Nurse Sunita Devi, who was on night duty, and a caretaker have been removed from duty till further orders and await fresh posting,” a hospital official told IANS.

He said negligence on part of these two employees was found after investigations into the incident were launched Wednesday. Probe against some other employees was also on.

Jodhpur District Collector Sidhartha Mahajan also came to the hospital Wednesday evening after the incident came to light and inspected the ICU rooms.

“The hospital staff - from doctors to security guards - go to sleep before 11 p.m., leaving the patients to fend for themselves,” a doctor in the hospital told IANS on condition of anonymity.

He said the paralysed patient was found seriously injured Tuesday morning by his family members.

“He had injuries on his ears, nose, lips and cheeks. Besides, the ventilator tubes were also found chopped. A hole was found in the ICU wall through which rats were seen moving in and out,” said the doctor.

“We have also asked for steps for rodent control by professionals,” Arvind Mathur, hospital superintendent, told IANS.

He said they were investigating whether the patient was really bitten by rats.

Sources at the hospital said authorities had closed the hole through which the rats were coming into the ICU rooms.

Rat menace in government hospitals in Jodhpur is not new. In 2009, an infant died allegedly after some rats attacked him soon after birth at the Ummed Hospital here.

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