WB Covid-19 toll doubles as govt revises numbers

Shobha Roy Kolkata | Updated on May 04, 2020 Published on May 04, 2020

West Bengal has revised Covid-19 death toll to 61 on Monday, up from 33 reported on April 30. Another 61 new Covid-19 positive cases have been reported in the last 24 hours, said Chief Secretary, Rajiva Sinha.

As per information available in the corona bulletin uploaded by the State Health Department, eight deaths were reported on May 1, seven on May 2 and two on May 3. This puts the total number at 17 in the last three days.

Covid-19 death toll in West Bengal has been under the scanner with the state government revising its numbers more than once.

An expert committee, set up by the State health department, had earlier in April stated that of the 57 people who tested positive for Covid-19 and died, as many as 39 had co-morbidities. However, it later revised it in end April and said that that as many as 105 who tested positive for Covid-19 died. Of these, Covid-19 was a direct cause of death in only 33; while the virus was an incidental finding in 72 other having co-morbidities including diabetes, hypertension and other ailments.

Incidentally, the Inter Ministerial Central Team (IMCT), which was stationed in Kolkata, has highlighted the “extremely high mortality rate” from Covid-19 in the state. In its final observations to the state government, the IMCT has urged the state government to be “transparent and consistent” in reporting figures pertaining to the pandemic.

According to Sinha, there were some difficulties in getting figures from private labs and this had led to some “complications” in reporting standards.

“The reporting standards were a fairly complicated process and that had led to some discrepancy in numbers,” he said and added that things have been streamlined and there should not be an issue moving forward.

A total of 25,116 samples have been tested till date in the state, of which 2201 samples were tested in the last 24 hours.

Published on May 04, 2020
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