TODAY.AZ / Weird / Interesting

Dead man’s heart still beating at funeral home

27 January 2010 [18:10] - TODAY.AZ
The grieving relatives of construction worker, Zhang Houming, aged forty-six, got the surprise of their lives when they discovered that the heart of their loved one was still beating when he was sent to the funeral home!

Sounding like it came straight out of the tortured mind of Edgar Alan Poe and his tales of premature burial and telltale hearts, the medics responsible for this terrible error that occurred at a hospital in Neijiang, Sichuan province have been severely chastised.

Pronounced dead for the first time after his motorcycle smashed into  a bus in a terrible collision when Zhang was returning home from work. His son, Haibo, was with him as they both worked at the same construction site. The son was knocked unconscious as a result of the impact. The ambulance took two hours to arrive on the scene, the driver citing traffic for the crucial delay.

According to a friend named You, who lives nearby and works in the same place, commuting via an electric bike, the trip to the work site, which is located in the heart of the city, usually takes less than an hour.

“I can’t believe an ambulance drives slower than my bike,” he said.

A doctor, after examining Zhang Houming, wrote in her report that the older victim had died.

“He stopped breathing and his heart was not beating”, said the doctor.

The medics put Zhang in a body bag inside an iced coffin, while his son was rushed to the hospital in the ambulance. When the ambulance arrived, waiting relatives were informed that Zhang had died and that the body was transported to a funeral home. They rushed there and when one of the man’s brothers was asked to make an identification, he put his ear to his sibling’s chest and to his horror discovered that the heart was still beating!

The family then phoned an emergency hotline and another ambulance soon returned Zhang to the hospital where doctors recorded Zhang’s pulse as 74 beats per minute and his breathing as 18 times per minute. Although they tried valiantly to save him, he really died about an hour later.

Although the hospital admitted to negligence, Luo Renfu, deputy chief of the city’s health bureau defended the doctor.

“The victim may have suffered from shock and his heartbeat may have revived after the minivan transporting him hit a bump,” said Luo.

Well, that bump is going to cost. The family is asking 1.5 million yuan ($220,600) in damages, but the government said it would not pay more than 200,000 yuan.

/Weird Asia News/

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