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Siliguri: The health department has ordered a probe against a well-known private nursing home for declining to perform a surgery on an HIV positive boy.

The deputy chief medical officer of health will conduct the probe and will furnish a report to the state health department in three days. On being indicted, the nursing stands the risk of being slapped with a hefty fine and even cancellation of licence for a repeat offence.

A 10-year-old boy and his widow mother, who hail from Belakoba in Jalpaiguri district, are both suffering from AIDS. The disease had claimed his father a few years ago.

Last week, the woman took her son to the state-run Jalpaiguri Super Specialty Hospital for pain in the abdomen. The hospital referred him saying that he needs a surgery and the hospital lacks adequate infrastructure to handle such a case.

The mother then admitted her to a private nursing home in Siliguri and deposited money as an advance for the surgery. But as soon as the management learned that the boy is suffering from AIDS, the nursing home declined to perform the surgery at the last moment and discharged him.

On getting to know this, an NGO stepped in and accompanied the boy to the North Bengal Medical College and Hospital. The NGO sought help from the police in getting him admitted.

NBMCH admitted the boy promptly and has stated that they will perform the surgery on the boy in the next few days. NBMCH Rogi Kalyan Samiti chairman, Rudra Nath Bhattacharya, visited the boy and then urged the district health department to initiate a probe against the nursing home concerned.

“Turning away an HIV positive patient is a gross violation of the National Aids Control Organisation rules and the order of the Supreme Court. If found guilty, the nursing home will be fined and the surgeon concerned will be issued a strong warning,” he said today.

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