Only three infants could be saved in the hospital based in Senegal.
A fire tore through the neonatal unit of a hospital in Senegal killing 11 newborn infants. Only three babies were able to be saved.
"To their mothers and families, I express my deepest sympathy," President Macky Sall tweeted late Wednesday. The cause of the fire is believed to be because of an electrical short circuit at the Abdoul Aziz Sy Dabakh Hospital in Tivaouane, a town 75 miles northeast of the capital, Dakar, Mayor Demba Diop said. Health minister Abdoulaye Diouf Sarr, was in Geneva attending a meeting with the World Health Organization when the tragedy occurred. According to The Daily Mail, he announced that he would return to Senegal immediately. "This situation is very unfortunate and extremely painful," he said on the radio. "An investigation is underway to see what happened."
This isn't the first time that tragedy has struck healthcare facilities in Senegal. A year before four newborns died in a hospital fire in Linguere, in northern Senegal. According to CBS News, in one case a nurse's aide determined that an infant had died but it was reported that the baby was still alive in the morgue and died later. In another incident, a pregnant woman passed away awaiting a cesarean section but in vain. The woman, named Astou Sokhna died in Louga, in the north of the country. Three midwives were convicted in connection with the case.
Sokhna's case has garnered national attention and even resulted in President Macky Sall ordering an investigation. Death during childbirth is a leading cause of mortality in Africa. According to BBC, the woman in her 30s had undergone a 20-hour labor ordeal and was ignored by doctors to carry out a Caesarean because it had not been planned in advance per local media. Her husband, Modou Mboup, who was in court, told the AFP news agency that it was important to bring her story to the forefront. "We highlighted something that all Senegalese deplore about their hospitals," AFP quoted him as saying. "If we stand idly by, there could be other Astou Sokhnas. We have to stand up so that something like this doesn't happen again." "The accused have denied and continue to deny [the accusations]," it quotes Abou Abdou Daffas, a lawyer for one of the convicted midwives saying. "A medical team has the duty to respond with what is available, not to provide the outcome," he continued. Many such cases are resulting in the public calling out Senegal's public health system.
So naturally I nipped over to this story.— Heggitha ;; (@HeggieFVK) May 26, 2022
Childbirth is DANGEROUS, no matter what country you're in... which is why contraception, abortion rights, maternity care etc etc are HUMAN RIGHTS. Not only must risk be minimised but no one should be made to do ithttps://t.co/wOhwCf2n1v
Representational Cover Image Source: Getty Images | AJ_Watt