Absence of duty doctors delays probe into 'testes amputation'

Sultan Al-Harithy's son during the six-hour wait for treatment at the emergency ward of King Faisal Hospital in Taif.

By Abdulaziz Al-Rubaie

Okaz/Saudi Gazette

Failure by the emergency room doctor and the night shift director at King Faisal Hospital in Taif to give testimonies because of their absence from work has delayed the investigations by the Department of Health Affairs into a case where negligence by the hospital staff allegedly led to the removal of a child's testes.

Sultan Al-Harithy, the child's father, accused doctors in the hospital of destroying his son's future by removing his gonads preventing him from leading normal sex life for the rest of his life.

He said the doctors refused to see his son for about six hours, which led to his son's condition aggravating.

The investigation panel has subpoenaed both the night director of the hospital and the emergency doctor who was the first to see the child but they both abstained from showing up.

The investigators also asked for the camera footage showing the child's arrival at the hospital.

Harithy said his son felt severe pain in the abdomen and his mother took him to the emergency room of the hospital at 2 a.m. where the doctors kept him for six hours without examining him.

He said the hospital refused to accept his son because his mother did not have the original family registry with her. He added that he was out of Taif at the time.

Harithy said the hospital refused to accept a photocopy of the registry and insisted on seeing the original document.

"My wife left for home and came back the next day with a photocopy of the family registry, which the hospital accepted this time," he said.

The father said the doctors immediately took his son to the operations room where his sexual glands were removed as they became useless according to them.

Harithy said the gonads became infected because his son was kept in the emergency room for about six hours during which contamination spread through his blood.

"The doctors were obstinate. The six hours they kept my son without operating on him had damaged his gonads. The doctors have completely destroyed the future of my son," he added.

The father said he filed complaints with the Health Ministry and also with the Health Affairs in Taif, which promised to investigate the case.

"I will also go to the judiciary to punish those who damaged the future of my son," he warned.