By Richardson Dhalai Sunday, February 17 2013
The distraught parents of a two-year-old girl who was fatally stung by a scorpion at her Chatham Village, Cedros home last Friday have called for an investigation into the lack of an antidote at three health facilities, including the San Fernando General Hospital (sfgh), and the slow pace of medical personnel in attending to the child.
According to reports, at approximately 10 am on Thursday morning, Faith Henry, two, was sorting through some clothes when she was stung by a large scorpion at her Chatham village home.
One of Faith’s siblings immediately called their mother, Nadraka Henry, 28, who rushed her child to the Chatham Health facility. She was then transferred to the Point Fortin Fortin Area hospital and finally transferred to the sfgh where she died at approximately 4am on Friday morning.
When Sunday Newsday visited Faith’s family, her emotional mother, wiping away tears from her eyes said her little girl, whom she referred to as “Mama Loo”, did not regain consciousness after leaving the Point Fortin hospital and arrived at the sfgh.
“As I reach, she started vomiting from there at the Chatham health centre and she didn’t regain consciousness and was only vomiting constantly,” her mother said, adding, “they administered three injections, and we had to wait for the ambulance to Point Fortin and then they took her into the room, and the doctors were hustling the nurses to place monitors on the child.”
“It was like a slow procedure in Point Fortin, nobody was really moving or responding, and we reach San Fernando just after lunch. She was immediately taken into a room, and given more injections,” said Henry as she sadly recounted the series of events leading up to her child’s death.
“She was unconscious when she left Point Fortin and arrived unconscious at San Fernando, most of the time she was vomiting at Point Fortin, the procedure was really slow, it took too long seeing about her and getting her out of point fortin. It took about an hour before we could have left point fortin to go to San Fernando,” she said.
She said her daughter died at 4am on Friday morning at the sfgh.
“As far as we get to understand while we were there, only Sangre Grande and Princes Town have the antidote for scorpion stings,” she said, adding, “I mean, in a village like Chatham, a rural area, they supposed to have that in the health centre, like country side, they supposed to have antidotes for snake bites, scorpion stings.” Her father, Noel Charles, 38, said he had not eaten for the past three days following the death of his little girl.
“Is a natural failure in the heath facilities,” he said, adding, “they could have called Princes Town, which is about eight miles away from San Fernando to get the antidote so by the time we reach San Fernando, it would have been there.”
“If my child had received the antidote in time, I believe she would have been alive today,” he said, adding, “and I want the relevant authorities to investigate this, why it take so long to treat she and why it have no antidote in a country like this.”
Meanwhile, Henry described her daughter who would have turned three years on April 21 as the “joy of the family and the life of the house.”
“Everything was ‘mama loo’,’ mama loo’, ‘mama loo’, everything, she was a loving child, playful and happy,”she said, saying she did not know how to tell her other children, two girls and a boy, that their sister would not be returning home.
In a telephone interview last night, Health Minister Dr Fuad Khan said while there were antidotes for snake bites at the sfgh, scorpion stings did not result in death but required supportive therapy which was available at the hospitals.
Meanwhile, South West Regional Health Authority, (SWRHA) Chairman, Dr Lackram Bodoe said an investigation had been launched into the incident.