Coronavirus Maharashtra: BMC failed to update 451 COVID related deaths in Mumbai

ST Staff
Tuesday, 16 June 2020

ICMR has issued guidelines which require all the hospitals to report any COVID related deaths unless the patient died due to an accident, poisoning, suicide or terminal illness

After a massive reconciliation of data by the Maharashtra Government, it was found that Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) hasn't reported as many as 451 deaths related to COVID-19 infection.

As of June 15, Mumbai's total number of coronavirus cases stand at 59,293 and the total death count is 2,250. Around nine other COVID-19 patients died due to some other illnesses, reported BMC.

According to sources, BMC explained that three of the 451 cases died an unnatural death like accident or suicide, and 20 other patient's names in the register were duplicated. In a meeting held last week, Maharashtra Govt asked BMC to 'come clean', as it was also found that 57 out of 451 deaths were presented in a staggered manner. Officials said, 371 deaths are yet to be accounted for, by the BMC.

In a grim picture, Mumbai's mortality rate is at 3.7 per cent, while India's mortality rate stands at 2.8 per cent, but it is said the rate may increase to 4.5 per cent soon.

The health officials report that inconsistency in data was observed when Maha Government carried out a data reconciliation exercise to match the overall COVID-19 cases with Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) figures.

The exercise which ended on June 6, went on for several days, it removed duplication, updated all the recovered cases, the death count and active cases.

“Any data mismatch brought to notice subsequently would be viewed very seriously,” read the state Health Secretary Dr Pradeep Vyas's notification to all the districts, and he gave a deadline of June 15 (Monday), 5 pm to report updated data from each district.

The health official added, how Mumbai had no record of 451 deaths and said, “Further inquiry found these patients had died but were not included in the official COVID count.”

Guidelines issued by ICMR requires all the hospitals to report any COVID related deaths unless the patient died due to an accident, poisoning, suicide or terminal illness.

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