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Sri Lanka not downplaying COVID-19 situation, says Health Ministry

27 May 2020 10:13 am - 9     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

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The Health Ministry, yesterday strongly rejected reports that it was downplaying the COVID-19 situation in the country, stating that all numbers reported of patients and deaths to date were accurate and all figures had been released for public knowledge.

A report, claiming to be compiled by the 'Alliance of Independent Professionals', spreading on social media channels in recent days, claimed that numbers of COVID-19 patients released by the government were 'grossly and deliberately under reported' and that Sri Lanka had two active clusters presently and not one. 
Among many allegations, the report said that provincial medical officers and public health inspectors have privately raised objections to the figures disclosed on the grounds while some task force members and government information department officers have privately confessed to journalists that the released figures do not count nearly 40 percent of positive test results from what they call 'mild COVID patients'.
However Deputy Director General of Health Services, Dr. Pabha Palihawadana rejected allegations stating that all numbers of patients and deaths had been released to the public as soon as their details had been received from the respective hospitals.
She further said that only the navy cluster remained active in Sri Lanka while there was a rise in the number of cases among those repatriated from other countries but they were contained within the quarantine centers. All other clusters had been successfully deactivated.  
"Allegations stating we are downplaying the situation here is false. We do not have any other figures released than what we receive from the units. We also ensure than the numbers are not duplicated," she said.
Further, commenting on allegations that there was a sudden spike in the cases of a kawasaki like disease among children in Sri Lanka, Dr. Pabha said that there was no such disease reported here as yet, linked to COVID-19. 
"There is no such cases reported by the clinicians. If we had any such cases it would have been very obvious. Currently we do not even have one single case of respiratory complication among children due to COVID-19 in any OPD or hospital wards. These reports are all false," she said. 
Till last evening, the number of COVID-19 positive patients had jumped to above 1,200 out of which over 700 had recovered and been discharged and 10 deaths had been reported.
A majority of the patients were receiving treatment at the IDH and Navy Hospital.(Jamila Husain)

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  Comments - 9

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  • Andrew Silva Wednesday, 27 May 2020 11:46 AM

    If the health ministry is saying the corona situation is under control why is the curfew still prevalent is it to punish the people.

    SEYED SHERALI Wednesday, 27 May 2020 11:49 AM

    It is in the interest of the general public and the country as a whole to take stock of the situation by several independent professional bodies and analyse the final result. If necessary the people in charge of the present health regulation should give way to new people with better knowledge and experience.

    JoseP Wednesday, 27 May 2020 11:52 AM

    Can the health department clarify what are the "Suspected and Under Observation" cases mentioned in their reports? All the other countries report only the positive cases and number of deaths. Why we have three case categories?

    Dr.Siri Wednesday, 27 May 2020 12:05 PM

    Nothing better than listening to a lie when you already know the truth.

    Dr.Siri Wednesday, 27 May 2020 12:09 PM

    The truth will prevail some day and every thing will make sense.

    Kingsley Wijesinhe Wednesday, 27 May 2020 12:09 PM

    Never believe anything until the government denies it.

    Nadi Karunaratne Wednesday, 27 May 2020 02:25 PM

    Lockdowns buy time and are vital.However only Test, Trace and Isolate can suppress the virus. We don't know the total tests conducted. The UK has done close to 4m which is way too low, we should have easily exceeded a million tests but have we? If not fighting this scourge blind.

    Dias Wednesday, 27 May 2020 06:14 PM

    Sounds ok Sri Lankan’s will fuss about everything

    Dushy Ranetunge Wednesday, 27 May 2020 11:02 PM

    If the health ministry says so, it has to be right. Whether it's war casualties or covid casualties Sri lankan government numbers are always accurate. They can always be relied upon unlike those traitors at the UN and NGOs. Jayaweewa!!!!


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