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Hospital finally closed over professional negligence

The  Machakos Governor, Dr. Alfred  Mutua has ordered the immediate closure of a private hospital in Machakos town which has been on the spotlight over allegations of professional negligence that led to the death of an infant over the weekend.

Dr. Mutua  who  yesterday afternoon visited the hospital accompanied by a team of senior medics from the county and professional bodies has also revoked the license of Shalom Hospital and ordered for the arrest of its proprietor, Dr. George Onyango and all those behind the botched treatment of the seven-month old baby.

The minor, is said to have developed complications after his parents had taken him to the hospital for treatment for a minor injury he had suffered the previous night.

But the condition of the baby worsened after arriving home forcing the parents to rush him back to the facility where he eventually died as medics were struggling to save his life.

The governor has also given the hospital 48 hours in which to arrange the transfer of all patients admitted in the facility to other health institutions.

He has also advised those with patients at the hospital to transfer them to the nearest public hospital within 48 hours or move them to a decent private hospital where they can be attended to.

Dr. Mutua has similarly advised members of the public against rushing to seek treatment from health facilities with questionable backgrounds to avoid falling prey to quack health workers.

According to a preliminary report which was released by the investigating team of medics led by Prof. Fredric Were a Pediatrician and Lecturer at the University of Nairobi, the jab given to the child was 20 times stronger than what his age required.

Prof. Were said it was the strong medication of morphine which is usually prescribed as a last line drug in relieving acute pain that led to the death of the baby.

It has also emerged from the investigations that the person who administered the jab was a community social worker and not a qualified medic as required by law.

“The administration of the jab was made by a health worker who was not qualified by law to do so .The prescribed dose was supposed to be 2 milligrams but what was given was 20 times more something which interfered with the child breathing leading to his death, ”he said.

The  woes of the hospital chain began last month after Police arrested an administrator at Shalom Community Hospital in Athi River after a woman was left to give birth at the facility’s reception as nurses allegedly watched and enjoyed their tea.

The administrator, identified as Thomas Ndolo, was arrested alongside a nurse identified as Edna Nyarangi following public outrage triggered by the viral video capturing the incident.

Kenya Medical and Practitioners and Dentist Board CEO, Daniel Yumbya says a report of the Athi River Shalom hospital will be released this Friday with recommendations on whether it shall be allowed to continue in operating.

Among officials who had accompanied Dr. Mutua today included, Edna Talam who is Nursing Council of Kenya registrar and representatives from the Kenya Clinical Officers Association.

By  Samuel Maina

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