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Patients at VIMHANS died the day hosp sent O2 SOS, say kin

Patients at VIMHANS died the day hosp sent O2 SOS, say kin
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New Delhi: As the Delhi High Court continues to try and stabilise the supply of medical oxygen in the Capital with scores of lives already lost in hospitals that ran out for hours in the last one week, families of patients admitted to the VIMHANS hospital here have now spoken out and alleged that their loved ones died on April 29 because of an oxygen shortage the hospital was facing that day.

While hospital authorities have decided not to explicitly say whether the cause of death was the interrupted oxygen supply, the CEO of the hospital has said "we feel the pain of families... in such crisis, we are trying to do everything in our power".

Ayush Rastogi, who lost his 28-year-old cousin to the virus, has questioned the hospital why the hospital admitted her when there was a lack of oxygen. "My sister was healthy and no medical history, on April 29 we admitted her to VIMHANS Hospital at 3 am, while she was not in critical condition. The same day at about 3.30 pm we were told about her death. I do not understand why they took a patient when there was no oxygen supply. How come my sister who was completely healthy succumbed to the virus," Rastogi asked, adding that he was told about the death of his cousin in the presence of four other families, who had lost their loved ones that day.

The same day, Vandana Puri's 56-year-old Covid positive uncle died at the hospital. "The hospital told us it was due to kidney failure, but the reports said cardiac arrest. We also spoke to him on April 28 night and he was fine. On April 29 evening we were informed that he is critical. On rushing to the hospital we were not told anything while at 5 pm we were informed he was no more. It was via Twitter that we came to know that the hospital had put out an SOS for oxygen supply. If that was the case and there was an oxygen shortage, why not inform us? We would have moved the family member out and had found other arrangements," she said.

While the families have questioned the authorities over this, the hospital administration has said that even though they understand the emotions of the families who lost their loved ones, it would be wrong to presume that it was the hospital that would have put the patients at risk.

Speaking to Millennium Post, VIMHANS (Vidyasagar Institute of Mental and Neuro Sciences) CEO Yateesh Wahaal said, "On Sunday, when we saw there was no supply we reached out to everybody. The cylinder backup that we had was the one we would always fall back on because we had the capacity. There were occasions where we ran out of liquid but we had cylinders. And if due to (low) pressure we had difficulties, we had teams on standby if anything happened."

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