Shashi Tharoor’s tweet on Andaman’s COVID-19 situation triggers ripple

Port Blair, May 12 (UNI) A recent Twitter post of senior Congress leader Mr Shashi Tharoor, regarding COVID-19 situation in Andaman, has triggered a ripple in Andaman and Nicobar Islands, upsetting local Administration and confusing residents.

Meanwhile, the official Twitter handle of PIB Fact Check has stated that claims made by Mr Tharoor regarding the COVID-19 situation in Andaman are factually incorrect.

“Disturbed to receive reports of a deteriorating #COVID situation in the Andamans, stories of 4-5 deaths daily at the GB Pant Hospital, figures of cases& deaths allegedly suppressed, no testing even of symptomatic cases, only 50 ventilators for 4 lakh people. Media sadly silent,” Mr Tharoor had tweeted.

Meanwhile, reacting to social media posts, the Health Department in a press release stated that COVID patient preliminary complaints of breathing difficulties, along with fever and other constitutional symptoms. In the present scenario, any patient who is having breathing difficulties is admitted for medical management irrespective of whether he is COVID positive or COVID negative.

“It will be not out of the place to mention here that breathing difficulties can also occur inpatient with cardiac, respiratory, kidney disease and also in malignancies,” the release said, without mentioning the name of Mr Tharoor anywhere.

The release further stated that on careful perusal and auditing of death, it is seen that either the patients reported very late and died within 24-48 hours or some patients who had severe co-morbidity like Renal Transplant, uncontrolled Diabetes Mellitus, hypertension succumbed late in the course of the disease. It was also seen that many patients who died in COVID wards, reports of RT-PCR were negative. Further, it is to mention that many of the patients who died had not received the vaccination. The release also mentioned that in the absence of any designated medicine or treatment of COVID infection, only symptomatic treatment is given.

“The oxygen supply at GB Pant Hospital is quite good. Sometimes even 100 Jumbo cylinders are consumed in G.B Pant Hospital for less than 50 patients on oxygen in a day. There has been no report of interruption of oxygen supply.” the release added.

Such misleading comments/ tweets only demoralize the Health Care Workers who are working day and night leaving their family and personal comfort for one goal that is to keep the Islanders safe and healthy, the release added.

Meanwhile, PIB’s Fact Check social media post mentioned that the Andaman and Nicobar Islands has reported only 16 COVID-19 related deaths during the second wave of the pandemic.

The post also stated that the island has a recovery rate of 96 per cent, which is the highest in the country. “The island also has the highest tests per million in the country,” it said.