Health ministry accused of removing woman’s womb without consent

Hertta-Maria Amutenja

Amalia Festus an unemployed mother from Windhoek is claiming N$ 3 850 000 in damages from the Ministry of Health and health and Social Services for negligence, after the Ministry reportedly removed her womb without her consent.

Festus is claiming the ministry failed to execute their duties professionally and as reasonably expected from trained and qualified medical professionals from the ministry.

The hearing began in the high court this week.

According to documents filed in the High Court, Festus is claiming N$ 100 000 for patrimonial damages, N$ 750 000 for pain and suffering, N$ 750 000 for emotional, psychological shock and trauma, N$ 750 000 for inconvenience and discomfort and N$ 1 500 000 for physical injury and impairment when they allegedly unlawfully, wrongfully and intentionally removal of her womb.

Festus is citing the ministry as the only defendant.

“The alternative claim for the violation of her constitutional rights, the plaintiff (Festus claims such loss and damages as monetary compensations in terms of Article 25(3) and 15(4) of the Namibian Constitution in the premises, the plaintiff (Festus is entitled to the damages claimed for the violations suffered,’ read the documents.

It is Alleged that on 12 December 2017 when Festus was about seven months pregnant, she went to Katutura Hospital complaining of back and lower abdominal pains.

However, she was informed that an emergency caesarean section would be performed in order to deliver her baby.

“The Plaintiff was thereafter admitted and informed by the medical staff that an emergency caesarean section would be conducted to deliver the Plaintiff of her baby.

After the emergency delivery, the Plaintiff was not informed of any resultant or discovered medical complications that occurred during and/or before the delivery by the medical staff. The Plaintiff remained in the hospital for about four days where the medical staff administered pills for the Plaintiff to drink, which medication the Plaintiff cannot identify,On or about the 16 December 2017, post the emergency delivery, the Plaintiff was discharged,” read the claim.

Additionally she said that on 17 December 2017 she then again started experiencing excruciating abdominal pain, neck pain, and vomiting.

“The Plaintiff went to the Windhoek Central Hospital, and was informed by medical staff that she would again be admitted so as to be examined by a doctor. The Plaintiff was put on antibiotics for 5 days, when she was informed by the medical staff that she had an infection, and that her body was not responding to the antibiotics. The nature of the infection and/or medical treatment was never explained to the Plaintiff,” she added

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