Woman miscarries outside hospital during lockdown
An investigation has been launched in China following massive public outcry, after a post on social media shared how an expectant mother nearing full term had bled outside a hospital, then miscarried while awaiting a Covid test.
Officials from a hospital in the Chinese city of Xian in the country’s north-west have been punished for refusing immediate help to a patient in need, authorities said on Thursday, according to AFP. The expectant mother, who was eight months into her pregnancy, was apparently told to wait outside the medical facility while her Covid tests were being prepared.
The woman started bleeding badly, and was eventually admitted to the hospital; however, her baby died.
The incident has reportedly enraged millions in China after the woman’s niece shared the story on social media platform Weibo last week. She posted a video of her pregnant aunt sitting on a tiny chair in a pool of blood, the hospital building behind her. The woman spent two hours there, the now-removed post claimed, adding that the expectant mother did have Covid test results but these had expired just hours before she felt unwell and rushed to the hospital.
A woman who was eight months pregnant suffered an abortion in front of a hospital in Xi 'an, China due to COVID-19.They refused to provide assistance to pregnant women on the grounds that the pregnant women's accounting test report was four hours late。@BBCScienceNewspic.twitter.com/1hx73FGIBk— peter (@peter34893158) January 5, 2022
The woman’s niece then posted that she’d received voice messages from her aunt saying she was “grieving and demanding an explanation from the hospital,” the South China Morning Post reports, adding that it had been unable to independently confirm details of the story. Media also reported a similar story, of another Chinese woman from Xian who said she, too, had miscarried after several hospitals refused her entry amid Covid-related restrictions.
The recent episode caused “widespread concern and a bad social impact,” the city government said in a statement on its official online account. The general manager of the Gaoxin hospital was suspended and “relevant responsible persons” fired, while certain departments were instructed to provide help to emergency patients even if they lack Covid test results.
Some 13 million residents of Xian, the capital of Shaanxi Province, have been under new strict lockdown since late December. Coronavirus infection cases have been reportedly growing there, prompting China’s biggest lockdown since Wuhan in 2020.