Figuring Out-A A +A
By DP Limlingan
Thursday, September 12, 2013
IT LOOKS like what has transpired at the Romana Pangan District Hospital (RPDH) that allegedly caused the death of Aichelle Mitch Lopez is slowly being figured out.
Last Wednesday, the Pampanga Provincial Board’s committee on health ordered the management of the said public hospital to submit all medical records and other pertinent documents related to their former patient’s Aichelle.
It can be recalled that Aichelle was confined at the RPDH on August 14 due to high fever. Her mother April Joy suspected it to be a case of dengue, considering that we are on the rainy season. The attending doctor has ordered the examination of the blood of Aichelle for some platelet counts.
The blood test is one sure way of determining whether one has dengue or not.
As per the examination, the doctors said that Aichelle was negative on the deadly dengue virus and that the results were just normal and it might not have been a case of dengue infection.
On the next day of her confinement, another test was conducted and the same yielded "normal" results, the fact led to the doctor’s diagnosis that their patient is negative for dengue. Aichelle's body temperature remained high.
The next day, April Joy – having doubts on the latest diagnosis -- had her daughter’s blood examined outside the hospital facility, only to find out that Aichelle's blood platelet count is so low. It was an indication that she indeed had the deadly dengue virus.
Based on this, it was found out, albeit too late, that Aichelle had Stage 3 dengue. She succumbed after her mother reported the blood examination results to the nurses on duty at the time of the confinement. Unfortunately, there was no doctor at that moment and that Aichelle went into coma.
April Joy, the grieving mother, has written a letter to Governor Lilia Pineda seeking help for the determination of possible "negligence" or "procedural lapses" on the part of the management and employees of the RPDH.
Pineda ordered a thorough investigation of the case and vowed to find out as to who might be held liable for the death of Aichelle.
It can be noted that one of the Pineda administration’s thrusts is on health and the improvement of the services of hospitals under the provincial capitol’s watch. For sure, she will not tolerate the negligence or lapses if any.
On the other hand, the Provincial Board’s health committee has started the ball rolling in their investigation, in aid of legislation, in the case of Aichelle’s demise.
Board member Cris Garbo, the committee’s head, reiterated that everyone in the hearing such as the RPDH doctors, nurses and hospital staff, including the mother of the victim, April Joy Calma Lopez and her relatives, has been under oath and that immediately after the investigation, recommendations and dispositions of the said body will be released.
The investigation was made into the “grilling” of hospital staff including its chief, Dr. Antonio Aquino who has denied some of the statements of Aichelle’s family.
With such case of alleged negligence and procedural lapses, many are all eyes now on the ongoing investigation by the provincial board. Definitely, the same should not happen again. The provincial capitol is spending much on the healthcare of its constituencies and that district hospitals should maximize the health services they render to the people.
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Published in the Sun.Star Pampanga newspaper on September 13, 2013.