Doctors at Lumbini Provincial Hospital refuse to treat HIV-infected patient

A HIV-infected youth, who visited the Lumbini Provincial Hospital at Butwal, was reportedly rejected for treatment by the physicians.

A 23-year-old man hailing from Panini of Arghakhachi, who visited the hospital to treat furuncle, ‘pilo’ in Nepali, claimed that he was rejected by the physicians only because he was HIV-infected.

This incident came hot on the heels of a doctor in the hospital bashing a child with dental problems last week.

The youth’s elder brother complained the doctors on Tuesday told that the pilo should be surgically treated but  rejected to do the surgery citing HIV infection.

“We can take risk of losing our job but we cannot treat your patient,” he quoted the doctors as saying. “Can’t we poor and HIV-infected be treated even after visiting a government hospital?” he questioned.

He accused the doctors of playing with the lives of patients despite receiving government facilities.

The youth had returned home just three weeks earlier after a long stay in India where he he became ill. He was then diagnosed with HIV infection just two weeks ago.

His family members took him to the Mission Hospital in Palpa suspecting him of suffering from tuberculosis. He was then referred to the provincial hospital in Butwal.

Dr Bhuwan Paudel and Dr Sharad Pokharel, who were involved in his treatment, refused to even dress the wound after the furuncle burst Tuesday night.

Dr Krishna Khanal, who is the medical superintendent at the hospital, himself did the dressing as others at emergency did not dress the wound until Wednesday morning.

Dr Khanal accepted that some of the furuncle cases have to be operated by senior doctors but that of the 23-year-old was not a complicated one.

He claimed it it wrong to say that the doctors did not perform surgery just because the patient is HIV-infected as HIV-infected expectant mothers are delivering and other HIV-infected patients are also being treated in the hospital.




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