I am astounded….and stunned, but regretfully not surprised.
It’s a very sad and most unfortunate story about how, after several (ELEVEN) attempts to get proper treatment, a 14-month old baby died from swallowing a battery in November last year. Why is it just now out in the public, I cannot answer but only speculate.
The story says that, “Christian was just 14 months old when he died. The child’s parents tried vigilantly for two weeks to convince several home doctors or ‘vagtlæger’, and hospital doctors that they feared the boy had swallowed a battery. The suspicion was rejected by the doctors.
The parents contacted a total of 11 doctors, (ELEVEN DOCTORS!!!!!)including lægevagt and the hospital where doctors saw the boy. But doctors rejected the suspicion of a swallowed a battery. One of the doctors actually asked the family to measure a similar battery with a tape measure before he dismissed the suspicion.
After two weeks with fever, cough, pain and difficulty eating Jim Christian Andersen died. The battery created a hole in his esophagus and the main artery. The child’s death would, in all probability, have been avoided if doctors had taken an X-ray, which according to records at a time were considered. But it was never ordered by the doctors. ”Now we must learn to live with the need for an autopsy before the doctors listened to us, ‘ says Jimmi Knudsen, Christians father.”
Another report from TV2 News reads: “Patientforeningen: Vagtlæger er ligeglade” (Patient Association: Home doctors don’t care). The article highlights that Danes are experiencing secrecy and indifference when they call the doctor on call, said chairman of the Patient Association, Villy Christiansen.
‘First you experience a phone lock (uncoorpative support), and then struggle with the doctor on call,’ he said.
He recognizes that there is a shortage of GPs and emergency doctors, therefore, is very busy, but Villy Christensen believes that entire on-call home doctor system must change, for example, to involve general practictioners more. He says that in many cases it’s not a doctor on call, but a nurse, which can take care of many things. Christiansen also admist that Danes often experience a closed-mindedness and a “I don’t care” attitude when they consult with the home doctors.
It is sort of ironic because I just had my first experience with the home doctors this past week. I was suffering from extreme stomach pain that had persisted for five days or so. I won’t go into too much detail, but the doctor that payed the visit simply did an exam to make sure I didn’t have appendicitis and told me to drink coke and eat bread and crackers for two days, and if it didn’t get better to consult with my regular doctor. I did get the feeling and still do that it could be more serious than that and coincidentally spent another sleepless night consulting with my mother on the phone who’s in Texas.
I too have have encountered this “shrugging of the shoulders” attitude and spent a significant amount of time trying to get proper treatment after numerous consultations. Due to this, I often find myself not trusting the doctors completely and second guessing their diagnosis and treatments. This is very unfortunate. And in this case, an innocent child lost his life.
Needless to say, this kind of attitude can have fatal consequences. I just hope that this case will help shed light on this issue so that people’s lives can be spared and suffering reduced – and this includes mental suffering wondering if one’s proplems are taken seriously.
My most compassionate, sincere and heart-felt condolences go out to this family. Unfortunatly, it’s a horrible way to learn a very hard lesson, one that I sincerely hope is learned.
Please let this child’s loss of life not be in vain (lacking substance or worth).