Who is guilty of a three-week-old baby's death in Yoshkar-Ola?


24 January 2013

On January 23, 2013 a resident of Yoshkar Ola appealed for help to the representative office of IRPO «Committee against torture» in Mary El Republic. She accused the local city children’s hospital’s medical staff of giving improper medical aid to her three-week-old baby which led to his death.   

Nadezhda, the applicant, told the human rights defenders that on October 7, 2012 about 7pm her son’s temperature had gone up to 39.4°C (102.9°F). She called up an emergency team. The arrived doctors gave the baby an injection of febrifuge and took them to Yoshkar Ola city children’s hospital. A duty doctor examined the baby there and gave a provisional diagnosis – acute respiratory viral infection.  The temperature went down for a while and Nadezhda with her son were put in the ward № 14 of the neonatal pathology department.

About 10pm a nurse came to the ward and brought anti-fever medicine, Nadezhda gave the medicine to her son. However from 1am till 3am the baby couldn’t fell asleep and cried, his temperature went up again.

Nadezhda says that about 4am she noticed a spot on his belly that looked like a broken vessel under skin, the baby was debilitated. However when the nurse saw the spot she didn’t attach importance to it. Nadezhda asked the nurse when the doctor would come and the answer was – in the morning.

About 6am Nadezhda carried the child to weighting, at that time rashes and spider veins were all over the baby’s body. The nurse panicked on seeing the state of the baby’s skin and started to search for the doctor immediately. About 7:15am a duty doctor came, examined the baby and went to fetch a resuscitation specialist. They came back 15minutes later and both examined the child. The doctors came to the conclusion that the baby is in grave condition. The baby’s condition was getting worse: there were even more rash on the body and respiration slowed down.

The doctors carried the baby to the resuscitation department. Besides the resuscitation specialist asked Nadezhda why hadn’t they called him earlier because the baby could had been saved. About 15 minutes later Nadezhda went up to the resuscitation department and saw the resuscitation specialist standing on the stairs and smoking. She approached the ward and saw her baby lying motionless on the table. There were doctors in the ward but not near her son, also she didn’t see any medical equipment near him.

About 8:25am the resuscitation specialist informed Nadezhda of appalling news: her son had died of meningococcemia.

The Yoshkar Ola Procuracy carried out a check on the fact of child’s death, the check resulted in obliging the head doctor of the government-financed organization of Mary El Republic “Yoshkar Ola cite children’s hospital” to look into complaint in a month and in putting up a question of disciplinary liability of the guilty officials. However the Yoshkar Ola Inquiry Department of the Committee of Inquiry RF in Mary El Republic didn’t find corpus delicti in the actions of the hospital’s doctors and refused to bring a criminal suit.

Nadezhda said that the lawyers of the Committee against torture had started a check.

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