Doctors and medical personnel throughout Mexico will begin to strike on April 13 to protest the detention of a doctor in Oaxaca accused of homicidal negligence.
Dr. Luis M. was detained April 2 accused of medical negligence for the death of a three-year-old he gave anesthesia to before operating on the child on Nov. 27 of last year.
Using the hashtag #El13NosParamos (Onthe13thWeStrike) the group of boycotting health professionals announced, "beginning April 13, 2018, only the critical areas (of hospitals) will be functioning: emergency, intensive therapy, emergency surgery and all other areas considered necessary."
The strike organizers added, if it’s not a "real emergency please don’t go to the hospital."
In an interview with local radio, Maximo Perez, brother of the accused, says he’s seeking justice for his sibling he says, "had no intention to kill the patient."
"My brother attended to the patient who was injured in an accident. He was working. The patient arrived, he was operated on and that’s when the reaction happened. It’s not known what happened and we can’t say, that’s why we need experts to determine the causes of why this happened."
According to the Oaxacan attorney general, last November the victim, Edward L. T. arrived in a private clinic in Oaxaca City for an arm injury the three-year-old suffered from a fall. Doctor Luis M., who gave the child the anesthesia before operating on him, is considered at fault for the death due to an apparent allergic reaction to the anesthesia. The attorney general says Luis did not take precautionary measures to avoid Edward’s death.
Dr. Luis could face between eight to 20 years in prison if found guilty of medical negligence.
"The accusation of homicidal negligence, if he's sentenced, would set a very dangerous precedent for doctors being that easily we can be accused of intentionally killing a patient if (he or she) dies," said Dr. Miroslava Solorzano of a national medical union.
Edward’s mom, Daniela Trujillo, says her son didn’t die from an anesthesia overdose but from liquid in his lungs that came from not fasting before surgery. She adds that the medical unions and protests are influencing judges involved in the case to release Luis.
This is the second major medical protest in support of the accused doctor. On Sunday medical professionals protested in over 70 Mexican cities demanding the release of Luis they say is being criminalized.