A private hospital in Chattogram city has been accused of handing a dead baby boy to a family instead of a girl who is alive.
However, the hospital authorities said it was a mistake and gave back the baby girl to her family when the news spread.
The victim’s family filed a general diary with Panchlaish police station in connection with the incident.
The victim’s mother, Roksana Aktar, claimed that Child Care Hospital in Golpahar handed them the dead baby on April 17 in order to sell the baby girl.
“Maybe they wanted to sell my child for a huge amount of money. Since the baby they gave to us was a boy they were caught. Had they handed us a baby girl we would not have realized it,” she said.
She demanded punishment for those responsible, including the doctors.
"Roksana gave birth to a baby girl on April 13. Since the newborn fell ill she was admitted to this hospital the next day," said her brother-in-law, Jahangir Alam.
Jahangir said: “Initially the infant was admitted to bed no 17 of the ICU (intensive care unit). But on April 15, the authorities informed us that the baby was shifted to bed no 13."
“On April 16, they told us that the baby’s condition is not good and she needs to be administered an injection. We bought them the injection."
“They called me on April 17 morning to tell me that the baby would have to be kepton life support and after several hours I got another call from them to hear that the infant is dead,” he said.
Janhangir further said they immediately went to the hospital and decided to bury the infant at their village home.
“They handed me a bill of Tk17,600. We were amazed to see the bill since they told us it might cost Tk8,000-10,000 per day.
“We asked the manager to know the reason but he could not give any satisfactory answer. After the payment, they handed the baby wrapping in a cloth in such a way that we could not see the face.
“They also asked us not to show the infant to her mother, who might be shocked to see the deformed face due to nosebleed.”
Jahangir said they found the infant a boy only when it was taken for a bath before burial.
“Then we brought the infant boy’s body to the hospital again. Initially the authorities did not pay any heed to our complaint."
“We went to Panchlaish police station to file a general diary. We sat in the ambulance throughout the night with the body."
“Finally we got a call from the hospital early in the morning and said they found the baby. They said the infant got switched with another in the next bed in the ICU."
“Later we handed over the dead baby boy to his parents. The hospital authorities gave back the baby girl to us. The infant is now undergoing treatment at the ICU of Royal Hospital,” Jahangir said.
Child Care Hospital Director Fahim Hasan Reza said: “It was a mistake. Both of the newborns were critical. The mistake happened as the two babies were kept in two beds in the same row. We apologize for that.
“We negotiated the matter in the presence of the families of the infants and they cooperated with us.”
Asked how the babies got switched even after having tags on their bodies, Reza said: “Since the condition of the babies deteriorated they had to be shifted from one bed to the other. Maybe the tags were placed wrongly in a hurry.”
During the infant’s admission to the hospital they wrote the gender of the baby was female in the register. But on the death certificate they wrote the infant was a male. They also changed the gender of the infant in the register as well.
When asked why they did it, Reza avoided a direct answer.
This article was first published on banglatribune.com