COVID cases drop, but Bengaluru’s fatality rate remains a worry

Number of COVID-19 patients who have died in Bengaluru has doubled in the last month, and the cumulative total of fatalities stand at 14,875. The city recorded 187 COVID-linked deaths on June 6.

The death rate was not declining at the same rate as the number of COVID cases. The number of COVID patients who have died have doubled in the last month. Pic: PTI

As the second wave slowly recedes, the number of new coronavirus cases in Bengaluru has dropped but the case fatality rate or CFR continues to be worryingly high.

In fact, the number of COVID-19 patients who died in Bengaluru has doubled in the last month, and the cumulative total of fatalities stand at 14,875, as per the data released on Sunday (June 6), reported NDTV. Just on Sunday, Bengaluru had recorded 187 COVID-linked deaths.

Further, the data revealed that the case fatality rate in the IT capital of India was hovering at a steep 7.71 per cent, while it was 2.2 per cent in Karnataka state.

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The BBMP commissioner, Gaurav Gupta, however, explained to NDTV that the figure seemed high because the deaths recorded on one day had not happened on that one single day. He said, “If you see the health bulletin which is issued by the state government every day, these numbers are pertaining to deaths that have happened 20,30,40 days back.”

Also read: COVID: Is Bengaluru repeating the same mistake?

According to the BBMP commissioner, the date of death is also reported in the bulletin and asked people to infer their own conclusions. However, the report reiterated that the number of deaths was not coming down at the same rate as the number of COVID cases. There were less than 3,000 cases reported in Bengaluru on Sunday, according to official data.

Meanwhile, Dr Vishal Rao, a member of Karnataka’s Covid Committee too had his own reason for the steep death rates in the city. As the total number of cases fall, the denominator needed to change as well and that was causing a rise in the ratio, he said.

Moreover, according to Dr Rao, though the total positivity rate was declining, the number of ICU patients still continued to be high. Nearly 80 per cent of the ICU beds in Bengaluru were still occupied, as these patients take a longer time to recover. (while nearly 50 per cent oxygenated beds have become empty ) 

The patients in the ICU stay for a longer time, for over 15-20 days and the government sees fatalities in these cases as well. And, that is increasing the case fatality rate, added Deputy Chief Minister Dr Ashwathnarayan.

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