The Delhi government has, in an order sent to heads of government and private hospitals, red flagged deaths of Covid-19 patients not being reported in a timely and regular manner. This comes two days after The Indian Express reported on a mismatch between the toll provided by the government and hospital data — the latter being significantly higher.
Chief Secretary Vijay Dev wrote: “It has come to notice that both public and private hospitals (both Covid dedicated and non-Covid) are not reporting deaths of positive cases of Covid-19 occurring in their hospitals in a timely and regular manner.”
The order said hospitals were not sharing death summaries with the three-member death audit committee formed by the Delhi government on April 20. “The death summaries of the deceased patients are not being provided to the committee, resulting in incorrect/delayed reports being submitted,” the order said.
The order, sent to the medical directors/medical superintendents, said: “The reporting of death cases of Covid-19 positive persons from all the health facilities in Delhi shall be strictly as per the SOPs.”
As per the SOP, every hospital has to report all deaths of coronavirus patients by email to the district and state surveillance units, along with a scanned copy of the case summary, medical files and all relevant data required by the death audit committee, by 5 pm every day.
A day after The Indian Express report, Delhi Health Minister Satyendar Jain had told reporters: “Some death summaries have not been provided to the Delhi government due to various issues and hence cannot be added in the list of deaths. As and when they arrive, we will release them.”
As reported by The Indian Express, the number of coronavirus casualties reported by Lok Nayak Hospital, Ram Manohar Lohia Hospital, Lady Hardinge Medical College and the Delhi and Jhajjar centres of AIIMS stood at 116 until Thursday night. According to the Delhi government’s daily bulletin, a total of 33 deaths had been recorded from these hospitals.
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