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Although a third hospital allowed their entry, Advocate Jaideep Jayawant, a lawyer with over 30 years of experience, had already passed away by then, having lost about half an hour being transported between hospitals.
A lawyer from Maharashtra passed away recently following a heart attack, after two hospitals declined to admit him for treatment amid the COVID-19 health crisis.
Advocate Jaideep Jayawant suffered a sudden heart attack at around 2.15 in the afternoon on April 14. His wife rushed him to two hospitals to no avail, before he passed away around half an hour later.
His wife, also a lawyer, first took him to a nearby hospital, which turned them away stating that the hospital was reserved for COVID-19 patients. Speaking to Bar & Bench, she informed that she pleaded for being allowed entry, pointing out that there was a medical emergency involved.
"I was not in a state of mind to fight with them and pressurise", she said, recounting that the security guard continued to deny entry. They went to a second hospital thereafter, only to be meted out similar treatment.
At the second hospital, the ambulance was not allowed to cross barricades installed before entry unless the patient was suffering from COVID-19, Jayawant's wife informed.
By the time they reached a third hospital in Nerul, around 3.30 in the afternoon, Jayawant had already lost about half an hour running between hospitals.
Although the third hospital allowed their entry, Advocate Jayawant, a lawyer with over 30 years of experience, had already passed away. His former junior, Advocate Girish Kurane, recounted that no one was able to aid his Jayawant's wife amid the crisis, given the lockdown in place.
"Golden precious time was wasted" Jayawant's wife said, pointing out that he may have been saved had he not been denied the urgent medical treatment he required.
Recently, the Union Health Minister, Harsh Vardhan, had warned of strict action against hospitals who denied treatment to patients in need of immediate care. He noted that several complaints had been received over hospitals turning away patients requiring urgent medical attention for critical conditions other than COVID-19.
Responding the same, Vardhan has been quoted as saying, "We need to take a serious view against this denial of treatment to patients who have been visiting hospitals in case of emergency and are being forced to visit a number of hospitals, one after another resulting in denial of immediate medical attention which may result in loss of their lives."