Sikkim: 20% of COVID-19 deaths in second wave linked to delayed hospitalisation
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Gangtok: Delayed hospitalisation of COVID-19 patients has been linked to about 20 per cent of the coronavirus deaths reported in Sikkim in the second wave of the pandemic, said the state’s health department.

Sikkim has recorded 193 COVID-19 deaths in the second wave of the pandemic so far since April this year, with a case fatality ratio of 1.08 per cent.

The relatively high percentage of deaths is being attributed to delayed or lack of hospitalisation among COVID-19 patients.

“COVID-19 patients are coming late to hospitals, with more than one-fifth of them dying either at home or being brought dead to hospitals or because they came to the hospitals when their condition was such that life couldn’t be salvaged. Even the lower hospital admission rate in recent months suggests so,” said the health department.

Data shared exclusively by the health department with EastMojo revealed that seven COVID-19 deaths were reported while patients were at home isolation.
While 19 COVID-19 patients were brought dead to hospitals, 17 deaths were reported within hours of admission in hospitals.

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Twenty-three COVID-19 deaths were reported within 24 hours of admission in hospitals and 18 were reported within 48 hours of admission.

Data indicated that as many as 84 COVID-19 deaths were recorded due to severity of patients while at home isolation and getting admitted to hospitals at the last moment. There was, however, no mention of the number of deaths recorded from COVID-19 care centres.

As many as 109 COVID-19 deaths were recorded among patients who were admitted for more than 48 hours in different hospitals in the state, indicating that they were provided with adequate medical attention until they succumbed to the coronavirus.

While STNM Hospital accounted for 243 COVID-19 deaths so far since the first wave, Central Referral Hospital has recorded 45 deaths due to the coronavirus since end of April this year, when the hospital was declared open for treatment of COVID-19 patients.

Meanwhile, the hospital admission rate has steadily declined in Sikkim from 17% in March to 8.7% in May, and 9.76% in June during the peak of the second wave of COVID-19. During the 15 days of July, the figure was 6.23%.

Even now, there are 2,347 COVID-19 patients in home isolation of the 2,719 active cases in the state as on July 22.

There are 67 patients admitted in STNM Hospital, 25 in Central Referral Hospital and nine in district hospitals of the state. There are 175 COVID-19 patients in different paid or free COVID Care centres in the state, as per the data released by the health department on July 22.

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Till July 15, Sikkim had recorded 87 COVID-19 deaths without comorbidities in the second wave of the pandemic since April this year. The fatalities make up for 49% of the deaths without co-morbidities, while 94 deaths were with co-morbidities.

Also, 33 per cent more people succumbed to COVID-19 in the second wave than in the first. In the first wave, only 24 deaths were recorded due to COVID-19, which accounted for only 18 per cent of the deaths directly due to the coronavirus, while 112 of 136 deaths were with co-morbidities.

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