Srinagar: Doctors Association Kashmir (DAK) Friday expressed shock over the death of a 3-year-old child who died due to non availability of ambulance driver at primary health care Lalpora, Lolab in Kupwara district.
In a statement, DAK president Dr Nisar-ul-Hassan said that it was “criminal” to refer a critical patient in a passenger sumo.
“How can you keep an ambulance without a driver which is needed round the clock for ferrying sick patients? The child could have been saved if he was put on life support and ferried in a critical care ambulance,” he said.
He said that the statement of health officials that the driver was on leave and there was no substitute “is highly irresponsible and an indicator of the apathy of the authorities and their disrespect for human life.”
“It is pathetic that our peripheral health centers lack basic life saving equipment and ambulances are as good as trucks thus risking lives of sick patients. There are neither child specialists nor facilities available in peripheral health care and all critical pediatric patients are referred to Srinagar who invariably die in transit,” Nisar said.
He alleged that the child has died because of gross negligence and complacence. “Those responsible for his death should be held accountable and punished,” he added.