A Mbombela (Nelspruit) mother is considering legal action after a state hospital in the city reportedly failed to properly treat her 11-year-old son’s hand, which he broke.
“It was terrible. He was very traumatized, ”said the mother, Annelise de Beer.
Her son, Nathan Barnard, broke his joint at school in September. After initially waiting for hours at the hospital to be helped, Nathan’s joint was anesthetized. When he woke up and an X-ray was taken from his hand, another doctor said the bone was still not straight and the procedure had to be repeated.
This time, however, the anaesthetist did not let him sleep and was awake while doctors tried to slam his joint, says De Beer. “He can’t remember it now, but he shouted blue murder. Blue murder. He saw it all, he was awake. “
They returned to the hospital after two weeks for a follow-up visit, where a doctor again tried to slam the joint – and again without anesthesia, says De Beer. She herself was so shocked by the procedure that she fainted.
Three weeks later, they returned to the hospital, where, according to De Beer, a doctor said the hand healed, despite the enormous lump it still had. Nathan also said he would walk with his sore hand, rather than go back to the hospital.
De Beer says she also had to get her own medication because the Panado prescribed by the doctor was not in stock at the hospital.
“We went home, but he couldn’t move or use his hand. You could clearly see that the hand wasn’t right. “
De Beer says she couldn’t just leave it there. A friend intervened and arranged an appointment with Nathan for a private doctor, an orthopedist. The doctor immediately said the hand had not recovered properly and an operation was scheduled to try to save the hand.
After a plea on Facebook and with the financial aid of charities, Nathan’s hand was operated earlier this month. The doctor performed the operation for free, while his wife, an anesthetist, also offered her services for free. De Beer says the doctor finally had to cut the bone to get it straight again because in the meantime it had grown completely crooked.
“My child is doing much better and you can now see he has a hand and a joint. The hand is straight, it’s just the cut that still needs healing. “
Due to the constant pain, Nathan was finally absent from school for more than 30 days and had to take his exam orally because he could not write. So he has to repeat his grade 4 school year next year.
“That hospital destroyed him. He is having a nightmare, ”says his mother.
“I didn’t complain about the treatment at the hospital anywhere. I kept saying the hand is not right, but if you don’t have a lot of money, leave it alone. “
Although Nathan’s hand is still slightly sore and uncomfortable, he is already on the recovery path. He also receives physiotherapy. “The Lord was good to us. It was a miracle. Within hours we collected all the funds [for surgery], ”says De Beer.
In addition to the doctors who offered their services for free, other people also generously donated to help Nathan. The money not used for his surgery has already been donated to help other children waiting for medical treatment.
“At least his story also resulted in something good. We could also help other children, ”says De Beer.
She says she is considering legal action against the hospital. The organization Collision 24 assists her in this. “People depend on state hospitals. They have to do their job.
“We are having a nightmare, but we are seeing a good year ahead. We are going to work hard and there is hope. There were so many people who supported us. I have tremendous gratitude for everyone’s help. ”