Tuesday, March 5, 2024

Denied ventilator; “people’s doctor” dies of COVID-19 in Gujarat

Doctor Darshan with his father Doctor Naresh Shah.

Doctor Naresh Shah, known as “People’s doctor” in Palanpur town of Banaskantha district in Gujarat, succumbed to coronavirus early on April 18.

The 76 year old physician could not find a BiPAP machine or a ventilator for intensive treatment despite exhaustive and exhausting search, said his son Dr. Darshan.

“If a doctor can’t get a BiPAP machine or a ventilator to save his life, imagine what would be the condition of a common man struggling to get intensive care,” Darshan posted on social media.

“When we admitted him, his oxygen requirement was 2 litres per hour which rapidly increased to 50 litres per hour. We needed a BiPAP machine or a ventilator to provide him breathing support.The Civil Hospital is overloaded and there is a severe scarcity of oxygen and ventilatory support. We contacted a local multi-speciality hospital which has multiple ICU beds with ventilators. But to our shock and horror, the hospital authorities refused to admit him saying that theirs was a non-Covid hospital. Moreover, they also refused to give a ventilator to extend a lifeline to the senior doctor,” Times of India quoted son of the deceased as saying.

Dr. Shah was finally brought to an Ahmedabad hospital where he succumbed to the virus within two hours of admission.

Naresh Shah was a very popular doctor in Palanpur locality. The doctor who started practicing since 1968, treated 100-150 patients daily till about ten days ago.


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