Planet China

Heartless

In the pantheon of unintended consequences, it has to rank as one of the stranger examples. Hospital bills in China can be huge, so it was a major boon when a man named Zhu was told that community leaders had agreed to pay his hospital expenses. However, 10 minutes after the Chongqing officials gave him the good news, a strange thing happened: he died from excitement. The 50 year-old, who suffered from hypertension and coronary heart disease, passed away in late 2007. Meanwhile his relatives brought a lawsuit against the hospital. According to the Chongqing Evening News, a local court has just awarded them damages of Rmb90,000 ($13,190), on the grounds that the hospital should have given Zhu drugs to control his anxiety.


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