Death of infant due to refusal to visit higher centre: Hek

Shillong, Mar 19: Health Minister A.L Hek today stated that the death of an infant in Sohra CHC could not be attributed to the health centre but was due to the refusal of the patient to visit a higher centre.

In reply to a call attention called by Nongpoh MLA Mayralborn Syiem, Hek stated that the patient was referred to Ganesh Das Hospital, Shillong to deliver the baby but she had refused.

“On examination, she was found to be of term size pregnancy with fetal heart rate only 100 per minute which indicates fetal distress. In view of the condition of the baby it was explained to the mother and the attendant and accordingly advised to attend a higher centre,” he stated.

He added that Dr. K. Kharnaior, Obstetrics & Gynecology Specialist was not in station as he was attending Court Cases in Shillong.

“As per the hospital records the mother was provided due care and there is no negligence on the part of the hospital staff,” he stated.

The health minister informed that Sohra CHC delivered 329 normal deliveries of the total 487 in 2020, and only one infant death was recorded in the month of January and February 2021.

“For the past three years there were no maternal deaths and this can be attributed to the good performance of Sohra CHC,” he added.

On issues of high infant and maternal mortality rate in the state, he stated that the Health and Family Welfare department has been giving extra emphasis on reduction of Infant Mortality Rate and Maternal Mortality Rate especially during the Covid-19 period through weekly meetings at the NHM level as well as the State level.

“The weekly reviews have revealed that the underlying cause of high maternal and child deaths in Meghalaya can be attributed to not only the clinical management or public health management, but more so, the underlying and often unaddressed socio economic and gender dimensions,” Hek added.

Therefore, he stated that this makes it important create awareness on the issue and initiate discussions from all sections of society, and that the Government is doing just that.

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