In a bizarre incident, a medical team in a hospital in southern China disposed of a live baby after mistakenly diagnosing it as a stillbirth. The shocking incident took place at the Nanhai Red Cross Hospital in the Guangdong provincial city of Foshan on Oct. 26, the Nanhai district health bureau said in a statement to AFP.
According to the statement, Liu Dongmei (eight months pregnant) was rushed to the hospital with internal bleeding and stomach cramps. An emergency delivery was carried out, and when the baby was born, it was neither crying nor breathing. In addition, its skin had apparently turned purple.
The medical staff believed the baby was dead and disposed of the body, without following the prescribed hospital procedure for such scenarios.
According to a report in The Foshan News, when Liu's sister-in-law wanted to see the baby 30 minutes later, she was given a yellow plastic bag with the baby's body inside. It was only then that it was realized the baby was still alive.
The infant was rushed to intensive care as soon as it was discovered to be alive, and its condition is stable, according to reports.
I opened the plastic bag and saw the baby's hands and feet moving, the stomach was going up and down and air bubbles were coming out of his mouth, the paper quoted the sister-in-law as saying. What was also a shock was the fact that the baby was a boy and not a girl, as it had been told to the family.
Apparently, the family were deliberately misinformed about the baby's sex in an attempt to soften the blow of its supposed death.
A Beijing News report stated that the head of the maternity ward, a doctor, and two nurses were suspended, pending the results of the investigation.
Liu and her husband are reportedly suing the hospital for 300,000 yuan ($45,000).