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More baby deaths uncovered at Mama Lucy hospital amid negligence claims

More cases of infant deaths at Mama Lucy Kibaki Hospital as a result of negligence have emerged, amid of growing unrest among staff at the facility over unpaid salaries.

Two more cases have arisen of babies who sere rushed to the hospital for emergency treatment only to be subjected to shambolic medical attention that inevitably led to their deaths.

This was after Nairobi News had last week highlighted the death of three-month-old Dominic Otieno at the hospital after waiting for five hours for an ambulance.

Nairobi Governor Evans Kidero has since set up a team to investigate the death.

NEGLIGENCE

On Monday, two mothers came forward to narrate similar experiences of negligence by the personnel at the hospital which they believe led to the death of their babies.

Purity Mutuku said her four months-old baby Gloria Kavata died at the hospital after doctors refused to refer her to Kenyatta National Hospital. The baby had pneumonia.

Ms Mutuku narrated how her baby had developed breathing problems when she rushed her to Mama Lucy Hospital at around 6am. The doctors jabbed the baby’s head several times to draw blood for testing but could not find a vein.

Later, another doctor managed to draw the samples blood samples and told the couple that the baby was critical and needed to be taken to an Intensive Care Unit (ICU) at Kenyatta National Hospital (KNH).

However, there were no beds available at the ICU in Kenyatta hospital.

STOPPED BREATHING

At around noon, the baby stopped breathing. The doctors tried to resuscitate her and put her on supplemental oxygen. The mother asked the doctors to let her breast feed her but they told her to wait since the baby was critical.

The baby’s father told the doctors that he had struck a deal with ‘someone’ at KNH who told him to take the child to the referral hospital. He asked for an ambulance but was put off.

The father decided to   take a private ambulance, but the doctors refused to discharge the baby and ordered them to take her to the children’s ward.

Ms Purity said they were also denied to meet the hospital’s management. The doctors said they could not deal with any other person but them.

At around 2pm,  the baby was pronounced dead. The hospital refused to clear the baby’s body for transfer to another mortuary. They said her file was lost.

“I went to clear the bill on Saturday and to transfer my child to another mortuary but I was told my file was apparently lost,”said Mr Mutuku.

SECOND CASE

The case is no different from Ms Dina Ouko’s experience. Her four year-old daughter, Janes Angel, died on February 5 after she was hit by a motorbike and taken to Mama Lucy hospital with head injuries.

She claims her daughter was given painkillers.

Ms Dina said that she asked the doctors to do an X-ray on the injured babym but was told the pain would subside in a week.

After two days, the baby had a convulsion and died after rushed to the same hospital.

The Secretary General Dr Ouma Oluga from Kenya Medical Practitioners Pharmacist and Dentist union absolved the hospital’s staff from blame.

MISMANAGEMENT

He said the ailing health sector in Nairobi has to a large extent been due to mismanagement by the county government.

Dr Ouma said medical practitioners in the city have had long standing problems with City Hall.

County executive member for health Dr Bernard Muia said that a probe team of nine people had been formed by Governor Evans Kidero to investigate all cases of deaths at the hospital.