Africa-Press – Kenya. Preliminary investigations by the Ministry of Health have revealed possible medical negligence and poor working conditions in the death of patients at Mama Lucy Kibaki hospital.
This even as more state agencies joined the Senate in the investigations of the mysterious deaths of three patients at the facility and Kenyatta National Hospital.
Kenya Medical Practitioners and Dentists Council and the Ministry of Health are carrying out parallel probes to establish the circumstances that led to the death of the patients.
They include baby Travis Maina who passed on at KNH with a fork jembe lodged in his head, Maureen Anyango who died after excessive bleeding at Mama Lucy and Edward Otieno who succumbed to accident injuries at the same facility.
A report by the ministry’s Kenya Health Professionals Oversight Authority (KHPOA) revealed that there were ‘delays’ to attend to Anyango and Otieno, leading to their deaths.
They faulted the facility for haphazard documentation of the patients’ care.
“Overall, it is noted that there were delays in the management of the patient, which led to poor maternal outcomes,” KHPOA CEO Jackson Kioko said in the report to the Senate Health committee.
Kioko, who is also the director of medical services, told the committee that the initial investigation shows that there was a delay of more than eight hours in attending to Anyango.
There was a delay of two hours from the failure of reversal to the decision for critical care at 5pm, a delay of three hours from when a decision was made to when an ICU bed was found at 8pm.
There was also a delay of another three hours when the ICU bed was found to when an ambulance was found to ferry her.
“While it is worth noting that the hospital made an adequate effort to provide the patient with appropriate care at this point, it is imperative to acknowledge that perhaps, this patient may have had a better outcome if an emergency C-section was done immediately after admission at Mama Lucy Kibaki Hospital,” the report reads.
Kioko, however, said the agency will is carrying out a comprehensive inquiry into the death of Anyango, who had delivered twin babies at the facility.
“A detailed report is to be submitted to the senate standing committee on health within 21 days,” Kioko said.
Kioko also said that the ministry will provide a detailed report on the investigations into the death of Otieno.
Kioko said that Otieno, 41, who had been involved in a motorcycle accident, could have been ‘inadvertently’ forgotten by the medics at Accident and Emergency area as the staff attended to other patients.
The interim report indicated that Mama Lucy is understaffed and ill-equipped to respond the workload, and especially emergency cases.
The hospital serves up to 2000 outpatients every day, of which 80 to 120 are emergencies. The Accident and Emergency section has a capacity of only 11 beds.
“Given the above findings, MLKH is not adequately prepared to prove quality and responsive emergency care to meet the needs of the population that serves it,” Kioko said.
The report recommended that MLKH clinical health professionals undertaking care in reproductive, maternal, neonatal and child care submit evidence of training in emergency care.
Concerning baby Travis, Kioko explained that an inquiry was underway to establish the conduct of KNH in dealing with the hospital.
A comprehensive report will be produced in 30 days.
However, the ministry appeared to defend KNH in its handling of baby.
The report sought to justify the more than 20 hours medics at KNH took to commence the operation to remove the jembe.
“In addition, it took another four hours of waiting before commencing the operation due to an ongoing case of an acute extradural haematoma,” Kioko said.