563 new deaths were added to the list of official COVID-19 deaths on October 22.

Bodies of COVID-19 victims are cremated at the West Hill crematorium in Kozhikode. File   | Photo Credit: K. RAGESH

563 new deaths were added to the list of official COVID-19 deaths on October 22.

The State has begun adding the “missing” or undeclared COVID-19 deaths to the list of official deaths, three weeks after Health Minister Veena George declared in the Assembly that 7,000 “missing” deaths would be added so.

On Friday, the State added 563 new deaths to its list of official COVID-19 deaths. Of these, 292 were those that had remained pending, or as the State claims, had been kept undeclared because of incomplete documentation. These are demises that belonged to the period before June 2021 when deaths began to be declared directly from districts through an online process.

Appeals by kin

Another 172 deaths were those that went missing from the official list as these were not acknowledged as COVID-19 deaths. These have now been added to the official COVID toll of the State after appeals filed by the families who had lost their loved ones to the disease following the new guidelines of the Centre on what constitutes a COVID death, subsequent to an order of the Supreme Court.

Health officials said that deaths would now be added in three categories to the official list — those that are routinely reported, pending deaths before June 2021 and deaths declared as due to COVID following the new Central guidelines.

All deaths are being verified at the State-level before these find a place in the official list to avoid duplications.

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