A couple have denounced a Peruvian hospital who they say let their unborn baby die because medical staff prioritised doing a coronavirus test.
The grieving couple also reported receiving a bodiless coffin which had the mother's placenta inside, instead of their baby, although the hospital insists they handed over the body.
Maritza, who was eight months pregnant, and her partner Julio, went to the San Juan de Lurigancho hospital in Lima on the morning of August 7.
The parents had to be rushed to there when Maritza realised she was losing fluid, according to national newspaper Peru21.
However, the couple claim that when they arrived staff made them wait and undergo COVID tests before finally seeing a doctor two hours later.
When the mum was finally examined by a physician the baby was without vital signs.
“They committed negligence, they prioritised me taking a quick test for COVID-19, despite being able to see the liquid escaping from the baby who was fighting to survive,” Maritza said in statements collected by Peru21.
“They could have been more humane and attended to him. But they preferred to do the test on me whilst my son died right there.”
At around 6pm, hospital staff performed a cesarean to remove the stillborn and Maritza was discharged after a little coffin was given to the parents.
It was not until the parents were preparing to carry out the wake of the child they realised the absence of the body, according to Peru21.
The coffin reportedly only contained a plastic container with Maritza's placenta inside.
“It's outrageous,” Julio told Peru21.
The hospital said in an official statement that the baby was already dead when they initially examined Maritza and insisted the body of the baby had been given to Julio.
The hospital management also said that they will make all the necessary information available to the authorities for the pertinent investigations.
There is no further news as to whether the parents are planning to press charges or if an investigation is underway.
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