A patient’s attendant dies after being sucked into the MRI unit at Nair Hospital, Mumbai

Nair hospital, MRI machine, Mumbai, medical carelessness, India, negligence,
A patient’s attendant dies after being sucked into the MRI unit at Nair Hospital, Mumbai

A Lalbaug resident, Rajesh Maru, died on Saturday evening after getting pulled into an MRI machine along with an oxygen cylinder that he allegedly carried into the room for his ailing relative. The incident occurred at the BMC-run Nair Hospital. The civic body has ordered an inquiry to ascertain how the cylinder made it to the MRI room where metal objects are not allowed.

The Agripada police on Sunday arrested Dr Saurabh Lanjrekar, ward boy Vithal Chavan and attendant Sunita Surve, booking them under IPC’s section 304A for negligence causing death, which is a bailable offence.

Rajesh Maru, the deceased, was at the hospital to help his brother-in-law Harish Solanki’s mother Laxmi, who had been admitted there. The doctors had suggested an MRI for her and hence he accompanied her to the room.
Harish, who was with Maru when the accident occurred, blames ward boy Chavan for asking the family to take the oxygen cylinder into the MRI room. When the family insisted that it was a metallic object, the ward boy assured them that the MRI machine wasn’t on and hence it was safe to take it inside. Maru took the cylinder in, which was sucked towards the machine by its magnetic force, dragging him along.

At the time, Dr Lanjekar and Surve were present in the room, the police said.

Police officers told TOI Maru got stuck in the machine with the cylinder over his body. A technician switched off the machine and as relatives and staff pulled Maru out, his left index finger got severed; the cylinder’s nozzle too got loose. The police said Maru inhaled an excessive amount of oxygen that led to his death—corroborated by his post-mortem report. Maru was taken to the hospital’s trauma centre, but efforts to revive him failed, said a police officer.

Nair Hospital’s dean, Dr Ramesh Bharmal told TOI, “It’s a tragic accident. We have instituted an inquiry to understand what went wrong.” He said the MRI machine was seven years old. “Until it is fixed, our patients will be referred to the BMC-run KEM and Sion hospitals for scans.”

MLA Mangal Prabhat Lodha said chief minister Devendra Fadnavis has agreed to give Rs 5 lakh in compensation to Maru’s family as he was the only earning member in his family.

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