'Negligence of doctors cost me my twin babies'

A MPUMALANGA woman believes that had it not been for shoddy service at a local hospital the death of her twins could have been prevented.

Dineo Lepaku of Seabe village in KwaMhlanga said inferior service at the Mmametlhake Hospital resulted in her losing the two babies she was carrying.

"Doctors at Mmametlhake should have seen something," she insists.

"I told them I was in pain and that my water had broken, but they refused to listen, saying it was not possible because I was only five months pregnant."

Lepaku, 30, told Sowetan that her water broke last week and when she went to the local clinic the nurses referred her to the hospital because her condition was serious.

"But when I arrived at the hospital the doctors checked me and discharged me, saying there was nothing wrong with me.

"I could not even see that I was carrying two babies and it was only after the miscarriage that we established that I had twins.

"So if they could not see my other baby, how could they see if there was something wrong?

"All they needed to do was to investigate the breaking of my water so early and my babies could have been saved."

Lepaku said she could not believe her ears a week later when she returned to the hospital and the doctors told her that the babys' hearts was not beating anymore.

"I will never forget that doctor's face. He just looked at me and said 'I am sorry but there is no fluid in your stomach'.

"And when nurses removed my baby from the womb, we were shocked when we realised that it was in fact two babies and not one as the doctors had informed me all along."

Dumisani Mlangeni of the provincial health department said the doctor who treated Lepaku had been instructed to submit a report of what happened.

"We will then take it from there," he said.