Home News UPDATE: Baby’s hand amputated after alleged negligence at hospital

UPDATE: Baby’s hand amputated after alleged negligence at hospital

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The baby is a twin boy, who was born prematurely at the Hester Malan Hospital in Douglas on December 1.

The baby’s injured hand. Picture: Supplied

THE ONE-MONTH-OLD baby whose hand was injured due to alleged negligence, has had to undergo surgery to amputate his right hand.

The baby is a twin boy, who was born prematurely at the Hester Malan Hospital in Douglas on December 1.

A family relative, Gizera du Plooy, explained that a bandage was tightly wrapped around his hand to secure a feeding tube that he kept pulling out.

“The twins were underweight and were fed through a feeding tube. The baby was crying all the time and must have been in a lot of pain.”

She added that the baby’s mother was shocked to find his hand swollen, purple and blue, when she decided to remove the dressing herself.

“They were transferred to Robert Mangaliso Sobukwe Hospital where doctors observed the baby. On December 22 she informed us that one of his fingers had fallen off. She is still very emotional and upset because other than being underweight, her baby was in good health at birth.

“A doctor advised her that the dressing was bound too tightly around the baby’s hand that resulted in poor blood circulation.”

Du Plooy stated that the hand could not be saved and that it was surgically removed above the wrist.

“The baby lost a lot of blood during surgery and also had to undergo a procedure to repair his intestines.”

She indicated that he was expected to be discharged on Saturday, January 9.

“While we are very happy that he will be coming home, we are worried that he will not be able to take care of himself or find gainful employment when he becomes an adult. He will not be able to do simple tasks that we take for granted, such as drive a car. It appears as if the hand that was removed is his dominant hand. If he needs further medical care, we will have to travel to Kimberley because there are no specialised facilities in Douglas.”

Du Plooy added that both parents were currently unemployed.

“The baby will require 24 hour care. The family will also have to apply for a disability grant for the child as they will not be able to cover his future medical costs on their own.”

The family intends filing a negligence claim against the Department of Health.

The Department of Health did not respond to media enquiries.