BEIRUT — Lebanon's Health Ministry announced Friday that it launched an investigation on Thursday, following the death of a one-year-old in a Bekaa Valley hospital, without giving further details on the causes of the infant's death.
According to local press reports, several hospitals in the region refused to admit the child leading to her death.
In a statement, the ministry said it was cooperating with the Internal Security Forces, who are also investigating the death of the child, whose father is a member of the ISF. Press reports indicated that the parents attempted to admit the child, who was suffering from a fever and severe coughing, into several hospitals in the area, but hospitals refused to tend to the child.
Hospitals in Lebanon often do not admit patients if they are uninsured, while sometimes making patients who do have insurance wait until receiving prior approval from an insurance company to ensure the services can be paid for.
A spokesman for the ISF, as well as several hospitals in the Bekaa, could not immediately be reached for further information.
The economic collapse in Lebanon has caused the healthcare sector to deteriorate significantly, while many practitioners, doctors and pediatricians have left the country as hospitals struggle to cover their operating costs.