Seven-year-old Aishwarya Ashwath died this past weekend at Perth Children’s House after running a fever.
She is believed to have waited two hours before receiving treatment in the emergency room.
The hospital’s seemingly callous attitude has resulted in calls for a review into the running of the emergency department.
“We pleaded with them to have a look. They didn’t think it was an emergency,” Aishwarya’s mother Prasitha Sasidharan has been quoted as saying.
“I went to the reception maybe four or five times. I was literally begging to them ‘please help, please help’.”
The young girl allegedly felt feverish on Good Friday and was given paracetamol by her parents before going to sleep. The next day, her symptoms worsened, and she was rushed to the emergency department by 5 PM on Saturday.
She was declared a “code blue” by the time doctors attended to her and she passed away later that night.
According to eyewitnesses in the emergency room, the hospital was understaffed over the long weekend, and Aishwarya was “easily the most unwell in the whole ED”, according to a source quoted in WAToday.
The president of the Australian Medical Association WA Andrew Miller has called for an independent inquiry into her death, as has Western Australia Health.
“The loss of a child is unbearable for any family and I am seeking an urgent briefing from the Health Department to understand the circumstances surrounding the seven-year-old’s death,” WA Health Minister Roger Cook said.
Aishwarya’s father Ashwath Chavittupara has supported calls for inquiries to ensure this does not happen again to another family.
“I’ve lost my daughter…” the distraught father said. “This should never happen to any other child in this country.”
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