Medi-Clinic to revisit claim

2005-09-30 15:44

Nelspruit - Private hospital group Medi-Clinic has asked the parents of an eight-year-old girl who allegedly was injured while in their care when she was just two weeks old, to lodge a new claim with the hospital.

The girl's mother, Margaret Manyike of Mkhuhlu near Hazyview, complained to the media in May this year after she failed to get any help eight years ago.

Manyike alleged that medical staff made a mistake when inserting a drip into her daughter's wrist, leaving her with a permanent scar.

Her daughter, who is now in Grade Two, has shiny scar tissue around her left wrist and reportedly complains that it hurts, and that her classmates tease her, by referring to the scar as a "wristwatch".

Medi-Clinic eager to help Nelspruit Medi-Clinic spokesperson Robyn Freathy said on Thursday the hospital was eager to solve the problem, but Manyike should lodge a complaint as they had known about this matter through the media.

"After receiving medical reports, Medi-Clinic feels it will would like to take up the whole incident with the family [again]," Freathy said.

"We're eager to solve this problem and are requesting that the parents lodge a claim to be put forward to us for consideration," she said.

Manyike was not available for comment on Thursday.

Documents indicate that Manyike lodged a written complaint to the hospital on November 23 1997.

In it, she alleges that a nursing sister ignored her requests to check the drip when the baby cried uncontrollably all night after it was inserted.

Baby's arm turned green Manyike claims that the next morning, she and another nurse saw that the baby's arm was swollen and turning green.

Manyike said the hospital, which was then called the Nelspruit Private Hospital Trust, offered her R1 500 compensation and to waive the medical costs for the time the baby was in hospital.

In return, Manyike was not to make further claims.

Manyike refused to sign the settlement and has kept it on file.

Medi-Clinic then sent the girl for medical check-ups after the media asked questions in May.

On its website, Medi-Clinic boasts being an established leader in the private hospital industry in South Africa, commanding a market share of 23%.

It has more than 5 500 beds in its network and approximately 11 000 full-time employees servicing more than 40 hospitals countrywide and in Namibia.