Baby rushed to Kerala hospital still critical, decision on surgery awaited

15-day-old infant critical, kept under 24-hour observation
Though the plan was to take the infant to Sri Chitra Tirunal Institute for Medical Sciences and Technology in the state capital, Health Minister K K Shailaja intervened after the trip became live news and arrangements were made to provide the treatment at Amrita Hospital.
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Kochi: The 15-day-old infant brought to Amrita Institute of Medical Sciences (AIMS), Kochi from Mangaluru has been kept under observation for 24 hours. According to hospital authorities, the damage to the baby’s heart was serious and a decision on conducting the surgery would be taken only after a detailed examination.

Though the initial plan was to take the infant to Sri Chitra Tirunal Institute for Medical Sciences in Thiruvananthapuram, Health Minister K K Shailaja intervened after the trip of the ambulance received live coverage. A decision was soon taken to admit the baby to Amrita Hospital in Kochi. The ambulance covered the 400 km distance from Mangaluru to Kochi in five-and-a-half hours.

The minister said that each moment was critical for the infant and the journey up to Thiruvananthapuram would be too risky. “So I spoke to the baby’s parents and the authorities at Amrita and it was decided to admit the infant to the Kochi hospital,” she said.

“Moreover, the treatment will be provided free of cost under the ‘Hridyam’ initiative,” Shailaja added.

The initiative to transport the fortnight old newborn was taken by the Kerala Child Protection Team (CPT) under an ‘Ambulance Mission’. The CPT had urged all people using the road till Thiruvananthapuram to clear the way if they noticed the ambulance via its Facebook page on Tuesday. Members of the CPT were stationed all along the route. The team also urged local people to provide all support to its members.

The infant belongs to Sania - Mithah couple of Kasaragod.

The trip was scheduled during daytime to take the child to any hospital along the way in case of an emergency.

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