Indian News

Referrals leading to deaths of pregnant women, reduce them, Bengal CM tells health officials

Source: , Posted On:   22 November 2022


Expressing displeasure over an increase in referrals in hospitals, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Monday asked senior health officials to bring down such cases by taking a serious view of the practice that was leading to deaths of pregnant women.

In a health review meeting, the CM directed the officials, particularly Health Secretary NS Nigam, to look into the cases of maternal deaths in referral cases. Those referring such cases should take the responsibility of deaths too, she asserted.

The Chief Minister said, “Today, if institutional delivery is 99 percent, then why should they (referrals) happen? This should not happen again.”

Referring patients without proper grounds is not acceptable, she said, adding, “Medical negligence is a crime. Why send a pregnant mother to another hospital? When I came in government, institutional delivery was 65 percent. Now it has increased to 99 percent. Why should doctors refer pregnant women to Kolkata when infrastructure has been developed in all hospitals across the state.”


She also asked senior health officials to pay surprise visits to hospitals. “Have you ever had a surprise visit in your life? I heard that we had a health secretary who used to stand in queues. Winter is coming, you stand in queues with a blanket to see what problem people face,” she said.

The CM said health centres were being built to improve the primary health system.

During the meeting, the CM also highlighted the alleged misuse of Swastha Sathi card. Banerjee asked health secretary to check which hospital refuses Swastha Sathi card and asked officials to even cancel the licences, if needed. “Also, some people are misusing it. Action must be taken against them,” she said.