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Dhaka Tribune

Patient’s death inside Gazipur lift: NHRC issues letter to DGHS for taking action

  • Date for report submission fixed for June 25
  • NHRC terms the incident at shocking
  • DGHS asked to find out the accused people
Update : 13 May 2024, 07:25 PM

Terming the demise of a heart patient inside a lift at the Shaheed Tajuddin Ahmad Medical College Hospital in Gazipur as very shocking and heartbreaking, the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) issued a letter to the director general (DG) of Directorate General of Health Services (DGHS).

The commission considers the incident of death after getting stuck inside the lift for 45 minutes after going to the hospital to seek medical care as unexpected.

Eusha Rahman, Public Relations Officer (PRO) at NHRC, the elevator is a modern electric powered device for moving up and down the hospital which needs to be checked regularly for errors.

“It is not clear to the commission whether the lift of the hospital is checked regularly. Besides, the commission felt it imperative to investigate closely why the liftmen did not reach the spot despite repeated calls and take exemplary punishment against the accused people.”

In the letter, the DG of DGHS has been asked to conduct a proper investigation of the incident and take necessary legal action against them by identifying the fact and find out the people who are responsible behind the negligence.

At the same time, the copy of the order of the commission has been sent to the Deputy Commissioner of Gazipur, Secretary of DGHS, Secretary of Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.

The date for submission of the report has been fixed by June 25.

Earlier, the hospital authorities have sent a letter to DGHS, citing the disorder inside the elevator as the reason behind the death.

The letter mentioned that the safety system of the lift did not work due to the patient and her relatives consistently pushing on the elevator door.

The letter, signed by Dr Jahangir Alam, acting director of the hospital, was sent to the DGHS on Sunday.

The hospital authorities have denied the patient’s family’s claim that they were stuck inside for 45 minutes and said they were only there for 10-15 minutes.

According to the letter, the lift was stuck between the ninth and 10th floors due to a power outage. In this situation, it takes the lift to operate again in just one minute. However, the people inside the lift and the relatives of the patients started pushing the doors which caused the lift to malfunction.

Later, before the manual intervention by the lift operator, the people inside the lift managed to get outside of it. Claiming that the elevator was not faulty, the letter said the hospital authorities regularly serviced the elevator.

On Sunday morning, the patient, Mumtaz Begum, 53, died when a lift malfunctioned at the hospital.

Dr Kamrul Islam, resident surgeon of the hospital also said, it is believed that Mumtaz had a heart attack a few days ago.

They brought her to the Shaheed Tajuddin Ahmad Medical College Hospital and admitted her to the medicine department of the hospital on the 11th floor.

After some physical tests, they were informed that Mumtaz had been suffering from cardiac-related complications. According to the physician’s advice, the family members were taking Mumtaz to the cardiac department on the 4th floor. But the elevator suddenly halted on the 9th floor around 11am and they were trapped there allegedly for 45 minutes.

The patient’s daughter Sharmin alleged that they called the hospital staff for help but they misbehaved with them. Later, they called the emergency helpline 999. Fire service members rescued them but her mother died.

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