MUMBAI: Family members of a 71-year-old man from Vakola in Mumbai who died of coronavirus infection on Friday have claimed that civic-run Kasturba Hospital had refused to admit him when they failed to provide his travel history.
One of the two sons of the deceased said on Sunday that family members came to know about the exact cause of the death only after local police informed them.
“We first admitted my father to a civic-run facility after he complained of uneasiness on March 24. But as his health did not improve, we took him to a private doctor in Vakola,” he said.
He claimed that the family members approached a civic-run facility in Santacruz (east) last Thursday, but authorities there asked them to rush the man to Kasturba Hospital in south Mumbai. “They provided us an ambulance,” he said.
He said when they reached Kasturba Hospital, the nodal facility for COVID-19 cases in Mumbai, we were asked to provide travel history of the patient.
“When we failed to provide travel history, they refused to admit my father,” he claimed.
I and my brother rushed my father to KEM Hospital on a two-wheeler on Thursday itself.
“My father’s treatment started on a bench at KEM Hospital. On one occasion he fell from a stretcher. Next day he was declared dead,” he said.
He claimed that no one from the hospital informed the family members that the man had died of COVID-19.
“We came to know only after local police informed us,” he claimed.
The man was buried in the early hours of Sunday, he said, adding that they had not received any document stating the exact cause of death.
Meanwhile, Shoeb Khatib, trustee of Bada Kabrastan in Marine Lines, said, “We were informed by hospital that he is a COVID-19 patient, hence we allowed his family members to bury him with all precautionary measures”.
Confirming that the deceased was a COVID-19 patient, a KEM Hospital official said that documents will be provided to his kin.
A civic body official said that family members of the deceased have been quarantined and contact tracing is on.
Kasturba Hospital officials cannot be contacted.
Mumbai alone has reported 406 COVID-19 cases so far.
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