A young couple are demanding answers from the Katutura state hospital following the death of their nine-month-old baby, who allegedly died after an injection they claim went wrong.
The parents are now demanding compensation for their loss.
The parents Mirjam Shimoneni, 24, and Otto Johannes Kambwale, 23, claim the hospital has to date not explained what transpired and they are yet to receive the deceased’s medical passport.
An emotional Shimoneni narrated that last year November 3, she took her baby, Ngololiya Otto Johannes, to Katutura hospital for her nine-month vaccination which was administered. She then mentioned in passing that the baby had diarrhea although not serious and she was referred to a paediatrician.
Shimoneni said the paediatrician took a drip and injected some clear-looking medicine in it and shortly after removing it, the baby was shivering.
Shimoneni said she then wrapped her baby in a blanket en-route to the pharmacy.
A woman seated in the queue had cautioned her not to leave the hospital with the baby in such condition.
She said the doctor later found her in the queue and told her to go home – could she not see how long the patients’ queue was.
The baby’s paternal grandmother then came to the hospital after a phone call and took the baby to a local private hospital. But when they arrived there the nurses asked why they had brought a dead body and not taken it to the mortuary. The grandmother replied she didn’t know the baby had passed on.
At around 04h00, Shimoneni said, she received a call and was informed the baby had died a long time ago.
“I believe the injection caused my baby’s death. They took the child to a private hospital but the health personnel there said my baby had died before arriving there,” remarked the mother.
Shimoneni who could not handle the news of her baby’s passing was later admitted to a mental health clinic. She said her baby’s death had just happened shortly after she lost all her belongings when her shack burned down.
“I don’t want this matter to die quietly. It hurts me a lot, my baby was not sick, she was healthy. Everyone was shocked when they heard our baby had passed away. I just control emotions but it’s difficult. I want the hospital to pay for my daughter’s life,” she said.
The young couple approached NamRights for assistance. Executive Director Phil ya Nangoloh confirmed the organisation was assisting the bereaved couple.
Ministry of Health and Social Services Public Relations Officer Ester Paulus said the parents may lay their complaints at the customer care offices or with the head of health facilities.
“If complainants are not satisfied with the outcome they may approach the Health Professions Council of Namibia to lay their complaints for investigations.”