Singed with hot rod to ‘cure pneumonia’- the child dies: Illogical distribution of health care

         In a heart wrenching and unfortunate incident from Bhopal (Madhya Pradesh), a 2.5 month child was singed with hot iron 50 times by a quack for treatment of pneumonia.  He died and   the incident appeared in newspapers, but similar kind of  treatments must be going on at many places and  gullible patients keep on suffering .The suffering is of two types; one, that they are deprived of correct treatment and other is the tremendous suffering because of such nature of cruel practices in the garb of  treatment.    

         That brings to the fore the basic question; why such type of treatments are being practiced and allowed to be conducted in 21th century. Why people allow  and consent for such treatments by quacks?

     These incidents simply reflect that the health system has not been able to travel  the last mile and  has failed to  touch the last man.

         Most important reason for such disparity is illogical distribution of health care.  Corporatization of health care has projected medicine as a purchasable commodity and consequently resulted in an Illogical distribution of health care

 People, who can afford, spend millions in the last few days of their life, just to have only a few more days to live. Resources spent in such a futile quest are equivalent to  thousands of times the money for food and medicines for the poor who lose lives for fraction of that expense.

It seems humanity has legalized the hoarding of medical care; give it to the rich, bundled with consumerism though not necessarily the needy. It is the same as hoarding of the food that is sold to rich, letting the poor die somewhere in the world without food, which remains invisible to all.

          Another worrisome aspect of the incident is  that  avoidance of people to  seek treatment from appropriate  clinics and hospitals. Anganwadi worker was there in the village, so it was possible  to seek help from the health system. Is the mistrust and malice  generated  by media towards  doctors and  medical professionals is the reason to  avoid seeking help from them?

BHOPAL: A newborn has died after being singed more than 50 times with a red hot iron rod in a bizarre ritual to ‘cure pneumonia’ in MP’s Shahdol district. A local anganwadi worker saw this horror being inflicted upon the child by a quack and persuaded the parents to take her to a hospital, say sources. They did, but it was too late. The baby’s body was exhumed on Friday evening for post-mortem examination. Even as police were grappling with this horror, a similar case was reported in a nearby village. This infant is in hospital. Police are yet to arrest anyone in either case and it’s not yet known if the same quack, a woman, was behind singeing both babies. The Child Welfare Committee has written to police to take action under section 75 of Juvenile Justice Act, but nothing has been done. When TOI spoke with Singhpur police, they said they were taking legal opinion on how to proceed with the case. An officer said they are waiting for the autopsy report to see what charges can be pressed. The baby who died was two and a half months old and suffering from pneumonia. Her parents live in Kathotiya village, around 520km from Bhopal and close to Chhattisgarh. “The infant was ‘torched’ as a method of ‘treatment’ on January 10.” Singhpur police station in charge, MP Ahirwar told TOI. The second incident happened in Samtapur villagee. The baby’s parents deny they put the girl through the burning ritual.

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