Huge difference in inter-district Covid death toll, Kerala Health Minister seeks explanation

Veena George
Veena George

Thiruvananthapuram: Kerala Health Minister Veena George has sought an explanation for the huge difference between districts in Covid death figures.

As per the Minister's directive, the health Principal Secretary has shot off a missive to the department director and medical education director to submit the exact figures and the reason.

The deaths reported from the districts were re-examined at the state level and the data was published after reportedly omitting several. This was the practice till June 15. These figures were handled by the Principal Secretary's office itself.

During a Covid review meeting held on June 7, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan had directed that the discrepancies in the fatality figures should be rectified. Following this, the Principal Secretary shot off the missive on June 8.

They have been instructed to give the total number of Covid deaths, and the district-wise figures. Also, to submit the reason if there is a significant difference between districts and if the number of deaths is high in any region. There is a big difference between the deaths reported from the districts and the figures approved by the health department.

Even though Covid gripped the entire state, the significant difference between district figures is due to the lapses in reporting and confirmation, according to the experts.

Difference in number of deaths in districts

Total deaths: 11,743

Most number of deaths - Thiruvananthapuram - 2589

Least - Idukki - 23

Case fatality rate

State average - 0.42

Thiruvananthapuram - 0.88

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