The death of a 62-year-old kidney recipient has drawn Thiruvananthapuram Medical College Hospital into a huge controversy.
Health minister Veena George suspended the department heads of nephrology and urology after being accused of medical negligence. The minister has also ordered an inquiry into the accident.
It is alleged that the Medical College was not kept on high alert when the ambulance carrying the kidney arrived from Rajagiri Hospital with the kidney of a 36-year-old woman who was brain dead.
The Medical College had not put in place any measures to receive the organ container from the ambulance and rush it to the operation theater. The people who arrived in the ambulance themselves had to take the container and rush to the operation theater.
Sureshkumar, a 62-year-old patient with end-stage renal disease from Karakonam and who had been on the waiting list for renal transplant under Mrithasanjeevani, had been admitted to the Thiruvananthapuram Medical College Hospital early morning on Sunday after the family had been intimated about the possibility of an organ from a deceased donor being made available for him.
“We have done two successful liver transplants, and that too for free. Also, all our five major medical colleges are now being equipped to carry out organ transplants. Setting dedicated organ transplant teams in government medical colleges will be a great boon as otherwise, people would have to depend on private hospitals where huge prohibitive sums are demanded for organ transplants. The chances of outside forces trying to undermine the government’s organ transplant programme will also come under the purview of the probe,” Veena George said.
The patient was taken for pre-operative dialysis at 4 p.m., at least one and a half hours before the kidney arrived from Kochi. The procedure was completed by 7.45 p.m. The patient was then taken to the operating room by 8.15 p.m., and the operation began at 8:50 p.m. In other words, any delay was ruled out by the preliminary report.
Despite the fact that the surgery lasted nearly eight hours, the patient was confirmed dead. Only after the post-mortem report can the exact cause of death be revealed.