Kerala to add 7,000 Covid-19 deaths; toll touches 33,000

Announcing the decision, state Health Minister Veena George said 7,000 cases had gone unreported in official data for want of relevant records. “If complaints exist about omissions in the list, the Health Department is open to look into them,” she said.

The Kerala government has decided to add 7,000 deaths to the state’s Covid-19 toll amid criticism for alleged under-reporting. The addition would take the state’s Covid-19 death toll from 26,000 to 33,000, as on Saturday.

Announcing the decision, state Health Minister Veena George said 7,000 cases had gone unreported in official data for want of relevant records. “If complaints exist about omissions in the list, the Health Department is open to look into them,” she said.

The 7,000 deaths to be added are those reported till the second week of June. Until then, a state level medical board was reviewing deaths and announcing the final list. That exercise had faced criticism from health experts and Opposition as it allegedly ended up in eliminating hundreds of deaths from Covid-related complications after the patient tested negative for infection. However, since the second week of June, hospitals were allowed to directly upload the death figures.

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