Medical Council dissatisfied with statement on amputee’s death
The Guyana Medical Council has requested further information from the West Demerara Regional Hospital to ascertain why its staff discharged 48-year-old Devanand Nauth last month, even though he had spinal injuries and an infected leg.
The spinal injury was only discovered after the patient was transferred to the Georgetown Public Hospital Corporation. His left leg also had to be amputated. He succumbed on August 16, last.
Region Three Health Officer (RHO), Dr. Ravindranauth Persaud, had told Kaieteur News that the staff alleged that they had not noticed Nauth’s spinal injuries when he took the X-ray examination.
Nauth’s relatives have filed a complaint with the Guyana Medical Council, which has since launched an investigation.
Kaieteur News understands that the Council has received what appears to be contradictory statements from physicians who treated Nauth at the West Demerara Regional Hospital.
“The doctors are saying different things that are not coinciding with what the family is saying,” a source said.
According to the source, Council members were also unhappy with a statement the body received from hospital officials. The statement was described as lacking key details and the Council has since requested another one.
Nauth was admitted to the West Demerara Regional Hospital on August 4, after he was struck down by a car while cycling out of Kidram Street, Vreed-en-Hoop.
His sister, Sita Ramsahoye, said that when she arrived at the hospital she observed that her brother’s legs were bandaged.
She said that a nurse told her that her brother’s condition was “not serious”, and that he just had sustained a cut to his head and cuts to his foot.
However, when she spoke with her brother, he indicated that he had lost all feeling in his limbs. She alleged that the nurse said that the numbness was due to the fact that Nauth had consumed alcohol.
Nauth was kept overnight. The following day, a nurse allegedly informed the family that he had been discharged and asked them to come for him.
Family members refused to take Nauth from the hospital as they felt that his injuries were too severe for him to be discharged so soon. However, one of Nauth’s brothers eventually complied with the hospital’s request.
The sister said that Nauth was unable to walk, so the brother had to “lift him like a baby” out of the institution.
On Monday, August 6, family members took the injured man back to the West Demerara Regional Hospital, where he had an X-ray. Nauth’s mother told Kaieteur News that her son was seen by a female doctor.
According to the woman, her son told her that his body was “numb”. She said that a physician prescribed injections for her son for seven days. Relatives alleged that the staff did not remove the bandage to examine the man’s injured leg.
Ms. Ramsahoye said that Nauth returned to the hospital on Tuesday, August 7th, and the staff placed fresh bandages on his leg and sent him home. However, the following day, the injured leg began to smell, and it was then that a senior hospital official examined her brother and ordered that he be transferred to the GPHC. The leg was then amputated.
Relatives also said that another X-ray examination revealed that Nauth had suffered spinal injuries and was paralyzed. He was admitted to the High Dependency Unit before being transferred to the Male Accident Ward, where he eventually succumbed.
Nauth’s sister rejected suggestions that he could have sustained his spinal injuries at home after being discharged from the hospital.
The family is also upset that police are still to inform them whether the driver who struck her bother down will be charged.