September 05, 2014
The government has confirmed 24-year-old Hamid Kehazaei has died after being transferred from the Manus Island detention centre to a Brisbane hospital for treatment.
Mr Kehazaei was taken from the centre after a cut on his foot became infected, and he developed severe septicaemia.
Septicaemia occurs when disease-causing bacteria overwhelms the bloodstream.
He was declared ‘brain dead’ earlier in the week, and this afternoon, his family gave permission for life-support to be switched off, Immigration Minister Scott Morrison said.
“An Imam was present at the time of death and the Government of Iran will be informed,” Mr Morrison said in a statement.
“I am very saddened by this man’s passing and on behalf of the Australian Government I extend our deepest sympathy to the man’s family and friends.”
“My department has and will continue to provide support to the family and has been in contact with family members during the course of the man’s treatment.”
Earlier, Mr Morrison had rejected suggestions Mr Kehazaei had recieved inadequate care and said people in mainland and offshore detention centres recieved outstanding medical care.
“Our focus in care has been on this young man from the moment he presented to medical officers at Manus Island,” he said.
The man’s family has reportedly offered his organs for transplant and Mr Morrison said that was up to them.
The Immigration Department says a full report is being compiled by the department’s chief medical officer.
Refugee advocates had earlier accused the government of medical neglect in the case of Mr Kehazaei.
“Hamid is a victim of the shocking conditions and medical neglect on Manus Island. It is inexcusable that he developed septicaemia on Manus Island,” Ian Rintoul, spokesperson for the Refugee Action Coalition, said on Wednesday.
“There are scores of infections on Manus Island, and many complaints of the lack of medical attention. Asylum seekers on Manus Island are often forced to walk through raw sewage.”
– With AAP