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MENAFN - Arab News - 19/12/2012

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(MENAFN - Arab News) An appeal court has ordered the Jeddah Administrative Court to review a verdict that affirmed the Ministry of Health's recent closure of a hospital accused of fatal criminal negligence.

The appeal court issued the review order after considering the objections raised by the director of Dr. Erfan & Bagedo Hospital against the ministry's order to close the hospital.

The ministry ordered the closure of the hospital for the duration of two months, following the death of Salah Al-Deen, the eight-year-old son of a prominent businessman, Yusuf Jameel, due to a fatal medical error during a surgery.

Dr. Muhammad Erfan, the manager of Dr. Erfan & Bagedo Hospital, said the ministry's decision to close the hospital was "oppressive, arbitrary and unfair." He added that the ministry had refused to meet with him and he was therefore unable to explain the reasons behind the eight-year-old boy's death.

The ministry should have punished the person who was the cause of the fatality, instead of closing down the entire hospital establishment, Dr. Erfan argued.

In a related development, another parent accused Erfan Hospital of committing a medical error that caused the death of his daughter.

Muhammad Al-Haddad, father of a young girl Ranim, victim of the alleged error, said no medical committee from the Jeddah Health Directorate visited his daughter while she was in the hospital, Al-Madinah daily reported on Tuesday.

He furthermore revealed that he had sent complaints to the higher authorities concerning the directorate's negligence.

Al-Haddad also denied a statement made by the health directorate that its medical team had been monitoring his daughter's case on a daily basis. "No team visited us after I refused to move my daughter to the King Fahd Hospital," he said.

He alleged that the directorate's statement was misleading and distorted.
On the other hand, Dr. Sami Badawood, director of the health directorate, said the directorate's medical team and committees intervened when the girl's condition started to deteriorate. The directorate also issued a travel ban against all the individuals related to the case.

The girl was suffering from a malignant brain tumor that was diagnosed to be at an advanced stage.

At the initial medical evaluation, the team discovered that the girl was brain dead, while she was in the hospital, Badawood said.

"Despite the fact that the girl was brain dead, the directorate arranged a bed for her at the intensive care ward in King Fahd Hospital, but her father refused to move her to that hospital," he said.

The issue has been transferred to the medical-legal committee for a final verdict.

On the other hand, Al-Haddad said, "a visiting doctor from another hospital, who examined my daughter five days before her death, said she was in a state of coma and was not brain dead. He also agreed to my request for a special scanning examination to be conducted on her."

He also accused the hospital authorities of delaying the scanning examination. She was in coma for four days before she finally passed away.

"The doctor in the hospital ran away when the accident occurred, but he was brought back after I complained about his disappearance," Al-Haddad said.


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