64 Children Die Over Six Days at India Hospital

At least 64 children have died in less than a week at an Indian hospital suffering oxygen shortages. Authorities in Gorakhpur, one of India’s poorest areas, have opened an investigation into the shortages at Baba Raghav Das Hospital but denied that they are to blame for the deaths. Prime Minister Narendra Modi is reportedly “monitoring the situation” and working with state authorities. State health minister Sidharth Nath Singh on Saturday confirmed that the death toll now stands at 64 after a spate of deaths earlier in the week, but he said the oxygen shortage was not the cause of the deaths. Local media reports say oxygen suppliers stopped delivering the goods after their bills were not paid, causing “chaos” for many patients. After the supply ran out on Friday, the Hindustan Times reported, “panic-stricken relatives of patients ran for help, and with the support of hospital staff tried to maintain supply of oxygen... using artificial manual breathing bags.” “However, several patients started collapsing due to inadequate supply,” the report said.