Home » Expert committee to probe deaths at Kurunegala Hospital dialysis unit

Expert committee to probe deaths at Kurunegala Hospital dialysis unit

by Gayan Abeykoon
February 26, 2024 1:19 am 0 comment

The Health Ministry has appointed a five-member expert committee headed by Chief Epidemiologist Dr. Samitha Ginige to look into the suspected deaths and health complications reported by patients who have sought treatment at the dialysis unit at the Kurunegala Teaching Hospital since January.

Health Secretary Dr. Palitha Mahipala, following an observation visit to the hospital on Saturday, said that the committee has been informed to submit a report to the Health Ministry on the measures to be taken to conduct a complete investigation of the incident.

“The number of patients coming to the dialysis unit affiliated to the Kurunegala Teaching Hospital is about 130,135. These patients are currently being referred to five other major hospitals in the Kurunegala District for dialysis. Those hospitals have taken all measures to avoid any inconvenience to the patients. The Kurunegala Hospital provides travel facilities for those patients to go to the respective hospitals. It has also been decided that the staff including specialists, doctors and nurses from the Kurunegala Hospital will go to those hospitals and provide support to the staff of each hospital,” he said.

Dr. Mahipala also said it has been decided to close the dialysis unit at the Kurunegala Hospital temporarily.

He further said the expert committee will look into the above matters and give a report. According to that report, the Ministry will take the necessary steps very soon.

Last Friday (23), the authorities of the Kurunegala Teaching Hospital took steps to seal and temporarily close the unit in view of the death of five patients who were being treated there during a period of a week.

According to reports, all these patient deaths have occurred due to the complications that occur after the blood platelet level in the body drops rapidly during the dialysis treatment.

Previously, no such unusual deaths had been reported from the Kurunegala Teaching Hospital

When asked about this, the Director of the Kurunegala Teaching Hospital, Dr. Chandana Kendangamuwa stated that no specific cause has yet been identified for the patient deaths.

Pushpakumara Jayaratne Kurunegala Corr.

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