Minister of Health orders thorough maternal death case review after death of Daily Mail Journalist

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Health Minister Dr Chitalu Chilufya(Right) looks at the records of a newly born baby in the neonatal isolation ward during his tour of the Monze Mission Hospital
Minister of Health Chitalu Chilufya has bemoaned the maternal death recorded at Levy Mwanawasa University Teaching Hospital on September 10, 2017.

Sithembile Zulu, a sub-editor at the Zambia Daily Mail died a day after delivering a baby girl at the institution.

Dr Chilufya says he is deeply shocked by the turn of events, as he holds that even one maternal death is too many.

The Minister has ordered for a thorough maternal death case review, as well as a postmortem to determine the cause of death.

Dr Chilufya says all procedures should be done on the deceased and scrutinised to ascertain the possible events that could have led to her death.

The Minister has offered utmost condolences to the bereaved family, friends, and the media fraternity.

And Ministry of Health Spokesperson Maximilian Bweupe has explained that 29-year-old Sithembile, in her 2nd pregnancy underwent a caesarian section due to fetal distress on September 8, 2017.

Fetal distress is when the fetus does not receive adequate amounts of oxygen during pregnancy or labour.

Dr Bweupe said the deceased became breathless after taking a bath in the morning, after, which the condition rapidly deteriorated before she passed on despite efforts to resuscitate her.

23 COMMENTS

  1. Gross Negligence! Her vitals should have been monitored closely for at least 6 hrs and her blood levels checked for severe Anemia. We need the medical personnel sued and fired for gross negligence. This is happening far too often right in our hospitals where no mother should die while giving birth. Now a baby must grow up without a mother…when will this stop Hon. Minister

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    • And if patient doesn’t pay up, something worse happens. And you know PF government employees are not paid in time. This case need go all the way.
      We are reading this story because her friend journalists reported it.

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  2. Ba Minister sure! Your limited experience and knowledge in medical matters is proving dangerous for health care delivery in Zambia! Yes it is sad a life is lost but how many others are lost on a daily basis? Have you presented any paper on common causes of maternal mortality? Let’s tackle the issues of obesity in women of childbearing age. It is not uncommon to end up with DVT and Pulmonary embolism which can explain the shortness of breath before the death. This can happen on the theatre table or after delivery. This is why routine Clexane should be given for all at risk cases. The question is does your ministry buy these things? Let’s stop playing politics with health care Bwana minister. It is dangerous!

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    • Iwe Duo Citizen, cant’ u understand that Dr. Chilufya is a qualified medical doctor? Whch limited experience in medical matter ar u refering to? Nosense.

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    • Iwe Jackass, who has appointed you a spokesperson? Take your bootlicking manners elsewhere! Tell us, does being qualified necessarily make you competent? Jackson, I am sure you can tell the difference between a Lizard and a Crocodile. The two are not the same. Being qualified does not mean you are competent and wise! That is what you say being a disgrace to the profession and that raises serious doubts about your so called qualifications, competency and experience. That is the problem of appointing cadres. Jackson, since you are the self-appointed spokesperson, advise him to stop addressing professional matters through the press!He as minister should know that we have clearly laid down communication channels if he wants to talk to fellow professionals! He is walking on dangerous thin ice!

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  3. Now you why wonder they are outsourcing everything! In this era and age this must never happen and should never be allowed to repeat. One wonders if we also have fake medical stuff in the healthcare sector. It is clear that there was some negligence in this case or the people handling the case ain’t qualified and those responsible must put aside while the investigations is being carried on. There is simply no room for errors when dealing with such sensitive cases. MHSRIP!

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    • “The Observer”, have you even read the professional note from “Dual Citizen DC”? let us not over react whenever there is lose of life. let the investigation be done before you can conclude. Life style also puts most of us at risk especially when exposed to child birth. “Pulmonary embolism”. Jesess!

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  4. Dwelling on individual cases is dangerous. Infant and maternal deaths is an indicator of poor health care system. Get your facts right Minister. This is a complicated case because it involves surgical interventions and consent was sought before the procedure and the child survived and the mother died later not in theatre . You are treading on thin ice minister.

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  5. Why so much fuss over this case Ba Minister, when these deaths have been happening nearly every day? please don’t blame any one but equip them with the necessary tools. And you medical personnel too much laziness you should change your working culture, if you know that it is not your call to save lives why joining this tough job.

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  6. MR MINISTER.DOES HAVE TO TAKE THE DEATH OF A JOURNALIST FROM A GOVERNMENT PAPER FOR YOU TO SIT UP AND SEE THE DETORIATING STATE OF MEDICAL FACILITIES IN THE COUNTRY? DOES THE LIFE OF SOMEONE FROM KALINGALINGA OR JOHN HOWARD OR ANY SHANTY TOWNSHIP NOT MATTER AT ALL? WHERE DO YOU GET YOUR VOTES FROM? THE COMMON MAN OR WOMAN HAS THE RIGHT TO LIFE AS WELL.

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  7. I hope the minister will now understand that it is not the building that treats people but the human resource equipped with the vital medical supplies! Most important, a minister of health must be wise and level-headed. This minister is a disaster for the health sector! The earlier he is fired, the better!

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  8. I think there was a president who announced that if a maternal related death was recorded, he would resign or something like that

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  9. Mr Ndanje or Khaki whatever you call yourself, please don’t believe in tradition so much. such thing as “inchila” or inches ” does not exist in science.

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    • Go on looking down on your traditions since you’re now “white “. By the way why do you people refer to others. ..Whatever you call yourself. ..when the name is there?

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  10. For all those of you who have commented above, I think you do not understand the concern of the Minister. It has less to do with the person who has died but more with the nature of the death. How many of you in recent months/years have heard of deaths of the mother or child or mother during child birth? There have been tremendous improvements on this front as Zambia is a signatory to some UN resolution/millennium goals on infant and mother mortality. I have friends and family who are medical professionals in Zambia and in fact and mother mortality is so rare now that when it occurs it is always a case that comes to the attention of the minister who will ask for a proper and detailed account of what happened and why. So this is not an isolated case.

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    • Go to rural areas. You will see that our national stats are doctored! We should not deceive ourselves just because we want to please the UN on their goals. Let’s see true commitment and truthful reporting!

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    • True, I witnessed it at UTH when my daughter went to give birth there. Those Doctors and nurses work like round the Clock. They make sure they follow the mother and child immediately she leaves the labour ward. What happened was just a misfortune, these people are doing their best May Her Soul Rest In Eternal Peace and wish the orphaned baby is well taken care of.

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  11. This is the case of Pulmonary Embolism. The condition is common after undergoing an operation.

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  12. I am not a doctor and I was not there when this happened and I do not know when it happened, but reading from the story, it says after getting a bath… Now where was this this? Was it at her home or in the hospital bathroom? If it was at home, how do you expect doctors to know what happened? Maybe she was taken to hospital when it was too late… Lets find out before we show our ignorance..

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  13. Instead of just scrutinizing the hospital, could we also verify the credentials of the rapidly mushrooming medical schools’ lecturers?

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Comments are closed.