Infant dies, seven others fall ill after consuming polio drops in Surat

Two-month-old Khusbhu Limbachia died within 48 hours after having the vaccine administered.

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In a shocking incident, a two-month-old girl died, while seven other children were reported sick within 48 hours of consuming polio drops in Surat. The vaccine was administered by health workers of Surat Municipal Corporation at a vaccination drive. While parents blame the civic body for using out-of-date vaccines, civic authorities claim they were perfect.

Khusbhu Limbachia, a resident of Sriram society at Amroli caught high fever and throat infection, after being given the polio drops. She was rushed to a private clinic and later to new civil hospital, where she died after a brief treatment. Family members said that health workers of SMC gave drops to Khusbhu on Wednesday evening in a polio vaccination drive. Within 24 hours of having the drops, Khusbhu developed health related problems.

"After giving drops, health workers gave us tablets and asked us to give them to Khusbhu if she catches fever. We gave her the specified dose, but her condition worsened on Friday morning. The only medicine we gave was the tablets given to us," Shailesh Limbachia, father of Khusbhu, said.

Limbachia added that seven more children in the society developed complications - fever and headache after consuming the drops. Civic officials however deny that drops administered were past expiry date. Hemant Desai, deputy municipal commissioner (health and hospitals) of SMC said that entire batch of drops were distributed by state government. If they were substandard, many more children would have died due to it.

"It seems that Khusbhu did not receive primary treatment, when needed. One case in 10 lakh cases arrives, where a child dies after consuming polio drops. We are waiting for post-mortem reports and if something wrong is found, appropriate action will be taken in due course," Desai added.

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