RELATIVES of a woman from Toledo City who died after giving birth want the doctor who attended to her before she died stripped of her medical license.

Joevinel Magno, 34, said his family is planning to seek the assistance of the National Bureau of Investigation in Central Visayas (NBI 7) to conduct an independent investigation to determine if there is negligence involved in the death of his live-in partner, Immaline Villarino, 34.

Villarino was brought to the Toledo City General Hospital (TCGH) on May 11 after she suffered of high blood pressure just four days before she was set to give birth.

But on May 14, hospital personnel suddenly transferred Villarino to the Vicente Sotto Memorial Medical Center (VSMMC) in Cebu City where she eventually died during an emergency caesarean delivery.

Magno admitted he does not trust the hospital management, which has launched its own investigation.

“Magpatabang mi sa NBI. Lisod gyod kaayo na kon sila sila ra (ang hospital management) kay kon magkasinabot sila wa gyod tay mahimo. Mas maayo nang naay lain kay kahibawo sab sila unsay sipyat nila,” Magno said.

(We will seek help from NBI. It would be better not to rely on their own (hospital management) investigation because if they come up with an agreed outcome, we could not do anything about it. It would be better to seek help from other agency so they would know their lapses.)

“Kon kinsa gyod ang sad-an, ila gyong barogan nga wagtangan og lisensya. Hingosgan gyod na nila, dili kay labanan. Patas nga imbestigasyon ug way labanlaban. Gobyerno man na sila kami unsa may ika-kontra namo nila, lisod kaayo kontrahon,” he added.

(Those who were at fault should be stripped of their licenses. They must enforce it, not defend them. We want a fair investigation and no biases. They are with the government and we cannot fight them.)

Magno said Immaline, who was suffering from high blood pressure, was brought to the TCGH for intermittent auscultation (the technique of listening to and counting the fetal heart rate for short periods) because she was expected to give birth on May 15 but she was instead advised for admission.

He said based on his own knowledge, a pregnant woman with high blood pressure should not go through a normal delivery.

Magno said during Villarino’s two-day stay at the TCGH, some of the hospital staff would always tell him that she was doing well whenever he would ask them about her condition.

But it came as a surprise when he was told on May 14 that Villarino needed to be transferred to VSMMC in Cebu City.

Magno recalled suggesting to the TCGH personnel to have Villarino transferred admission to the Cebu South General Hospital in the City of Naga as she was already in pain and that her skin was turning yellow. A midwife of the TCGH, however, convinced him to transfer Villarino to a government hospital as he would be required to pay a P100,000 down payment if he avails himself of the private hospital’s services.

Magno said if he had decided to transfer his partner to a private hospital at that time, she would still be alive now.

Villarino was eventually laid to rest on Saturday, May 21.

Villarino has two sons -- Wedzner, 12, and Vanz Razil, 9 -- with Magno.

Magno said he and Villarino were planning to marry under Roman Catholic rites after she gave birth to their youngest son but this did not push through.

Magno and Villarino have been living together since they were 19 years old.

In a separate interview, officials of the Department of Health in Central Visayas (DOH 7) will be sending a team from its Regulations Licensing and Enforcement Division (RLED) to the TCGH to investigate the incident.

Dr. Jaime Bernadas, DOH 7 director, told SunStar Cebu that he has not yet received any communication regarding the incident, but added that he will check with RLED for a progress report.

Bernadas said the RLED will talk with the TCGH’s management about the processes and protocols since these are under its oversight and regulatory control.

“Personal and professional issues are to be directed to the appointing authority and PRC (Professional Regulatory Commission),” he said when asked what would be the DOH’s action once the accusation against the hospital management is proven to be true.

Mae Delia Tacandong, acting Toledo City administrator and City Social Welfare Development officer, said the City Government has vowed to provide financial aid to the family, including funeral expenses. (PAC, MKG / TPT)