Child paralysis case referred to N.H.S.

By Deidre Tautua-Fanene ,

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FAMILY HEALTH CLAIM: Baby Tovanse of Aufaga.

FAMILY HEALTH CLAIM: Baby Tovanse of Aufaga. (Photo: Misiona Simo)

The case of a one-year-old Tovanse Meni, who has been paralysed since last year, has been referred to the National Health Services (N.H.S.).

This was confirmed by the Chief Executive Officer (C.E.O.) of the Ministry of Health, Leausa Dr. Take Naseri.

“I don’t have the information in regards to that matter,” he said.

“However, I have forwarded your email to the National Health Services because the matter falls under them.”

Leausa did not clarify who he had forwarded the email to.

“You should be able to get a response from them sometimes this week,” he said.

Questions sent to the General Manager of N.H.S., Palanitina Tupuimatagi Toelupe, were not answered as of press time last night.

Baby Tovanse of A’ufaga was born healthy last year until he became ill and was diagnosed with pneumonia and admitted to the Moto’otua Hospital. 

His grandmother Toloa’i Meni is adamant negligence by hospital staff triggered his seizures and eventually led to him becoming paralysed.

“My grandson was six months old at the time when we took him to the Moto’otua Hospital last year because he had a very high fever,” she said. 

“When we arrived at the hospital, the doctors told us at the time that he needs to be admitted because he’s got pneumonia and so we stayed there. After our week at the hospital he was then discharged and we came home."

“However, after couple of days we saw that there was no change at all then we took him back to the hospital. When we went there the second time and told them that there is no change at all from the first time he was admitted, the nurses at the time then said they needed to do some tests to see if he’s got meningitis.”

“I then asked them if this will affect my grandson, given that he is only six months at the time, but they said ‘no’, they only needed to get a small amount of water from his backbone so that they can run some tests to determine whether he’s got meningitis.”

Two days after the medical procedure was undertaken, the grandmother said her grandson started experiencing violent seizures. 

“He started having seizures and his arm and leg started shaking non-stop so I asked them and they said it’s nothing then they would do another injection to stop him from having seizures. From those seizures, I saw my grandson’s head was growing and his legs and arms started to get stiff and I asked them but they didn’t give me an answer.”

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