India Dismayed Over WHO’s Covid Mortality Report, Authentic Data Not Taken into Account, Says Mandaviya

Union Health Minister Mansukh Mandavia on Monday expressed India’s dissatisfaction and concern over the latest report by the World Health Organization, which shows the all-cause excess mortality estimates in relation to the COVID-19 pandemic. Mandaviya said the reliable data published by the legal authority had not been taken into account by the WHO. According to the report, there have been 4.7 million coronavirus-related deaths in India – 10 times the official number and about a third of Covid deaths globally.

“India would like to express its disappointment with the manner in which the WHO All-Cause-Death Report has been prepared and published, ignoring the concerns expressed by India and other countries about the methodology and sources of data, while excluding reliable country-specific data,” Mandavia said in his address to the session. 75 of the World Health Assembly at WHO headquarters in Geneva.

In a report released on May 5, the World Health Organization estimated that nearly 15 million people have died globally either from the coronavirus or its impact on overwhelmed health systems in the past two years. This number is more than double the official death toll of six million. Most of the dead were in Southeast Asia, Europe and the Americas, the report said.

Mandavia said the Central Board of Health and Family Welfare was collectively disappointed by the report. The representative body of health ministers from all the states of India has issued a unanimous decision regarding the approach and methodology of the World Health Organization for the determination of excess deaths.

The health minister also said that India is committed to building a more resilient global health security architecture. “As the Prime Minister of India (Narendra Modi) has made clear, there is a need to build a resilient global supply chain to enable equitable access to vaccines and medicines, simplify the WHO approval process for vaccines and treatments and strengthen the WHO to build a more resilient global health security architecture.”

Mandavia also said that India is ready to play a major role as a responsible member of the global community. “India believes that this year’s theme, linking peace and health, is timely and relevant because there can be no sustainable development and inclusive health and well-being without peace,” he said.

(with PTI input)

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