BAGHDAD (AP) — The loss of life toll from a catastrophic blaze that erupted at a coronavirus hospital ward in southern Iraq the day past rose to 58 on Tuesday, Iraqi medical officers stated.
Two well being officers stated that greater than 100 individuals had been additionally injured within the hearth that torched the coronavirus ward of al-Hussein Instructing Hospital within the metropolis of Nasiriyah on Monday.
Earlier, officers had stated the fireplace was brought on by an electrical brief circuit, however haven’t supplied extra particulars. One other official stated the blaze erupted when an oxygen cylinder exploded. The officers spoke on situation of anonymity as a result of they weren’t approved to talk to journalists.
The brand new ward, opened simply three months in the past, contained 70 beds.
Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi chaired an emergency assembly within the wake of the fireplace and ordered the suspension and arrest of the well being director in Dhi Qar province, the place Nasiriyah is positioned, in addition to the director of the hospital and town’s director of civil protection. A authorities investigation was additionally launched.
It was the second time a big hearth killed coronavirus sufferers in an Iraqi hospital this 12 months. At the very least 82 individuals died at Ibn al-Khateeb hospital in Baghdad in April, when an oxygen tank exploded, sparking the blaze.
That incident dropped at gentle widespread negligence and systemic mismanagement in Iraq’s hospitals. Docs have decried lax security guidelines, particularly round oxygen cylinders.
On Monday, Ammar al-Zamili, spokesman for the Dhi Qar well being division, instructed native media that there have been not less than 63 sufferers contained in the ward when the fireplace started. Maj. Gen. Khalid Bohan, head of Iraq’s civil protection, stated in feedback to the press that the constructing was constructed from flammable supplies and susceptible to fireside.
Iraq is within the midst of one other extreme COVID-19 wave. Each day coronavirus charges peaked final week at 9,000 new instances.