Mumbai: Cops track 44 of 59 'missing' COVID-19 patients
Most of those who were not reachable had got their tests directly from private labs and then got themselves admitted to hospitals
Within 24 hours of the P North assistant municipal commissioner approaching the Mumbai police to trace 59 COVID-19 patients who went missing, the cops found 44 of them. While most patients had got admitted to private hospitals after undergoing tests, some were admitted by BMC itself, and yet their names were on the missing list.
Every ward office receives a list of active COVID-19 cases in the area on a daily basis, after which they reach the patients' homes and make appropriate arrangements for their treatment based on their health condition.
"On checking the list of patients, the Malad P North ward office realised that 59 of them were missing. Either their addresses were wrong or their phones were switched off/not reachable," said assistant municipal commissioner Sanjog Kabre.
A team of BMC doctors and health workers conduct thermal screening and check-ups at a camp in Kranti Nagar. File pic
"The missing patients were residing in the jurisdictions of various police stations like Malad, Kurar, Dindoshi, Bangur Nagar, Malvani and Kandivli, all of which are in P North ward. We send them the list and requested them to trace the patients," he added.
Requesting anonymity, a police officer said, "After receiving the list we started the investigation and within 24 hours traced 44 of the missing patients out of the total 59. Most of them had undergone tests at private labs and then got admitted to private hospitals. As they are undergoing treatment, their phones were switched off. We also tried to reach some of their homes but their addresses were wrong. Maybe they shifted to different houses and did not change the addresses on their Aadhaar cards."
Speaking to mid-day, Vinod Mishra, corporator of P North ward (Malad), said, "The BMC prepared the list without checking and it led to panic. I looked for a number of people in my area along with the cops and it was found that many of the missing people were admitted to hospitals by the BMC itself. Another negligence that has come to the fore is that the contact number of a person from the list, who has died, was that of a health official. This was revealed when the cops called to know his status. Action should be taken against such BMC officials who create unnecessary panic."
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