NAJRAN — A citizen was forced to administer a shot to his cancer-stricken daughter after Saudi and expatriate nurses at the Maternity and Children’s Hospital in Najran refused to do so. The father took his daughter, Hajar, to the hospital Thursday so she could receive the shot. However, the nurses at the hospital allegedly refused out of fear something would happen to the girl.
According to a report in Al-Watan Arabic daily, Nasser Al-Rashid said his daughter has had a swollen right eye since birth. He took her to King Khalid Hospital in Najran and there he was told that Hajar had protruding retina. She was referred to King Khalid Eye Specialist Hospital in Riyadh and tests showed she had a malignant tumor in her right retina and it had penetrated the nerves.
Doctors carried out an ophthalmectomy and removed the tumor and referred Hajar to King Fahd Oncology Center for Children where she was hospitalized for 13 days. There, she received chemotherapy treatment for six months, one session each month. Doctors also prescribed several shots to bolster her immune system and gave Al-Rashid instructions on how the injection should be given. The father was told that he could have any primary healthcare center in Najran give his daughter the shot.
“The nurses at the hospital in Najran refused to give my daughter the injection although I gave them the paper which explains how the shot should be administered. We waited for hours and hours to no avail.”
According to Al-Rashid, when a doctor at the hospital instructed the nurses to give Hajar the shot, they refused and the girl’s parents waited until Friday morning to convince the nurses. Finally, Al-Rashid said he injected the shot in his daughter’s arm by following the instructions on the paper.
Salih Al-Monis, director of Health Affairs in Najran, said an investigation would be initiated and negligent doctors or nurses would be held responsible.