3 May 2012

Kenya: Family in Kitui Cries Foul Over Kin's Death

A family whose relative died at Kitui District Hospital is appealing to the Minister for Medical Services Anyang Nyong'o to fast-track investigations into her death.

The family of Felistus Jane Mutinda launched their complaint with Medical Practitioners and Dentists Board in August last year after the botched CS operation. A letter written to the family by the board and signed by George Magoha, the chairman, says in part, "The Preliminary Inquiry Committee of the board found the complaint lodged to have merit and it has been referred to the full board for inquiry. Formal charges will be drawn against the institution and the concerned doctors and you shall be contacted in due course," The letter dated September 26, 2011 was copied to Nyong'o and his PS W.M Ngari.

However the family says they have not been contacted since then regarding the progress of the case. "We are completely in the dark. Our efforts to contact the board on the progress of the case has not been fruitful. All we are asking for is justice for our daughter," Catherine Mulei, a cousin to the deceased told the Star yesterday.

She said that she had been left to single handedly take care of the one year old daughter left behind since the family is very poor. Felistus had delivered through cesarean operation but the doctor who was operating on her allegedly "forgot" a cotton fabric referred in medical terms as gauze inside the womb. Scan images by Dr M. N. Wambugu at Machakos Imaging Centre showed a fabric mass measuring 6cm long by 2cm width lying in the abdomen, causing inflammation of the intestines.

Dr J Okinyi, the family's pathologist who did the postmortem, said the fabric had stayed in the womb for long and made internal organs to shut down, resulting into her death in June last year.

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