Epidemiology Unit accused of manipulating pandemic data

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321 cases reported by Kegalle RDHS on 09 August reduced to two

By Rathindra Kuruwita

Evidence has emerged that there is a significant discrepancy in COVID-19 numbers, reported by the Health Ministry’s Epidemiology Unit and the Regional Directors of h

Health Services (RDHS) offices in the Kegalle District and Uva Province.

On 09 August, the Epidemiology Unit reported that there had been only two COVID cases in the Kegalle District, but the Kegalle RDHS office reported that there had been 321 cases. The Epidemiology unit reported 61 cases on 10 August, 15 cases on 11 August, 23 on 12 August, two cases on 13 August, eight cases on 14 August, 42 cases on 15 August, and 13 cases on 16 August.

The Kegalle RDHS office reported 263 cases on 10 August, 204 cases on 11 August,300 cases on 12 August, 372 cases on 13 August, 179 cases on 14 August, 126 cases on 15 August, and 505 cases on 16 August.

The Epidemiology Unit reported that there were 10 COVID-19 cases reported from the Badulla District and 47 cases in the Moneragala District on 16 August. However, the Uva Province Health Department said that 398 cases were reported from Badulla District and 440 cases were reported from Moneragala district on the same day.

A few weeks ago, it was revealed that 8,826 COVID-19 patients in Gampaha District had not been included in the countrywide COVID-19 data.

The Gampaha District COVID-19 Prevention Committee revealed that 12,555 COVID-19 patients had been detected from the district between 1 August and 9 August. However, only 4,046 patients were receiving medical care at treatment centres and 1,506 were receiving home-based care.

Contacted for comment, a spokesman for the Epidemiology Unit said tests were conducted at various labs and they found it difficult to verify them on a daily basis. Only the vefified data were announced and they were rectified later.


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