Tragedy occurred at a BRD Medical College in Uttar Pradesh, India this week, as 60 children reportedly died after oxygen supplier withdrew his services over unpaid debts.
It was gathered that 34 babies died at the neo-natal intensive care unit, 12 died because of encephalitis, while the rest died of other unspecified causes.
However, BRD Medical Chief Medical Superintendent Dr R.S. Shukla denied the deaths had been caused by a lack of oxygen supplies when asked by Reuters.
In a statement released by the hospitl, the children’s death was blamed on “drop in pressure in the supply of liquid oxygen” on Thursday, as the hospital further disclosed that added cylinders were procured from various other suppliers.
The breakdown of the death toll provided by the hospital showed a spike on Thursday, with 23 fatalities, including 14 babies at its neo-natal unit. The government is investigating the matter.
“We have launched an inquiry and a preliminary report should be out today,” Anil Kumar, Gorakhpur’s divisional commissioner, told AFP news agency.
“Yes, sixty patients have died at the hospital in the last five days but we don’t think it’s linked to reports of oxygen shortage.”