On October 23, a video clip was posted on YouTube by a person nicknamed “duyhoa.dieuhuyen” titled "Doctor and Money” showing graphic pictures of a 10 year old girl with appendicitis being turned away from
After viewing the video clip on the internet, which clearly insinuated that the
The 4-minute clip showed a little girl writhing in pain from appendicitis and a man arguing with a doctor who seemed to say that the girl’s health insurance card had expired. The clip also showed that the man and the doctor argued about hospital fees.
Thanh Tan, director of
In addition, the clip also had comments that criticized the hospital.
Tan said the hospital was checking on all the medical staff who attended to Thuy on October 22. “We will punish anyone who committed any wrongdoing”, Tan added.
The clip triggered a wave of indignation among netizens who claimed that the hospital put money above the life of a patient in need of emergency treatment.
Dr. Tan told SGGP that on October 22 a man stinking of alcohol calling himself Cam and introducing himself as the girl’s father brought Thuy to the hospital. After examining her, the hospital doctor diagnosed her with appendicitis and then decided to initiate a procedure to transfer her to Quang Ngai Province General Hospital for surgery.
While Thuy was waiting for the paperwork to be completed, Dr. Ha discovered that the patient’s insurance card had expired and asked Thuy’s sister, also present in the hospital, to bring the patient’s new card, if any, when coming to the Quang Ngai Province General Hospital, to avail discount benefits in treatment fees, Tan said.
Cam then quarreled with Dr. Ha as he thought that the hospital wanted to collect the hospital fee before it could treat Thuy, Tan said.
“It is false to say the hospital refused to treat the patient because her insurance card had expired or because she had no money,” the director said.
According to Health Department regulations in Quang Ngai Province, under 12-year-old patients needing anesthesia before an operation must be transferred to a province-level hospital, since it is a complicated procedure requiring skilled practitioners and technique, explained Nguyen Van Diep, deputy director of the hospital.
Cam narrated his version: “After a long wait in the hospital corridor, I came into the emergency room. I found her lying on a sickbed crying with pain and holding her abdomen with her hands. I thought that no doctors had examined her yet, and while we were waiting for an ambulance, a doctor came to say that the girl’s health insurance card had expired. Thinking that the hospital was refusing to treat the girl due to an expired insurance card, I quarreled and argued with the doctor,” Cam said.
The Quang Ngai Province General Hospital later confirmed that Thuy suffered peritonitis and perforated appendicitis. The doctors then performed an urgent surgery on her.
One day later, the girl’s father took her valid insurance card to the hospital to complete the procedure for hospital fee payment, the hospital said.
Thuy has recovered and will be discharged today, the hospital said.
Her father is a farmer and her mother is a mental patient. Thuy is a grade 5 student at the Pho Minh Primary School, the newspaper said.