Rabat – After a video of a woman giving birth in the streets of Fez shocked Moroccan social media users earlier this week, Morocco’s health minister has suspended the doctor deemed responsible.
In the disturbing video, a woman can be seen giving birth in the street just outside of the University Hospital of Fez.
The woman and her husband are from Sefrou, a small town about 30 kilometers south of Fez. The couple first went to Sefrou’s maternity ward, where medical staff sent them to the University Hospital of Fez.
The hospital in Fez then denied the woman care, and she went into labor a stone’s throw from the hospital’s entrance.
The recently appointed Minister of Health, Khalid Ait Taleb, has brought the hammer down on Abdeslam El Bekkali, a gynecologist-obstetrician practicing at Mohammed V hospital in Sefrou.
Since the Hassan II University Hospital Center of Fez opened its doors in 2009, Ait Taleb acted as the general director of the hospital and the head of its visceral surgery department. Consequently, the horrifying incident hits close to home.
Ait Taleb launched an investigation into the incident and found that El Bekkali was responsible for the woman’s traumatic and humiliating lack of care.
On November 8, French-language news outlet Le360 published a photo of the letter sent by Ait Taleb to the Regional Director of Health in Fez.
In the letter stamped on November 7, the Minister of Health states that El Bekkali will be temporarily suspended from his position while continuing to receive his salary.