The fake news factory has been working overtime to churnout conspiracy theories and misinformation around the novel coronavirus. Now, an audio clip is being massively shared on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and WhatsApp, claiming that it is the audio of Dr Devi Shetty, Founder and Chairman of Narayana Health.
The claim along with the message reads, “Audio by Dr Devi Shetty cardiologist chief, Narayana. He has clearly said about day top day symptoms and testing, listen carefully. Directly from the horse’s mouth.(sic)”
The person in the audio clip goes on to advise people to “follow” or track their symptoms and be mindful.
“Everyone who has coronavirus or is suspected to have, should not go to get tested. India has 1.4 billion population and the kits we have are less than 1,50,000,” the person says adding that everyone should track their symptoms and if they are getting worse then, a patient should get tested.
He further goes on to say, “We don’t have enough tests. Like now, my hospital is struggling to get N95 masks. So. please don’t waste blood tests now.”
The same audio clip is being circulated on YouTube.
The Quint also received a query on its helpline number to verify the message.
WHAT’S THE TRUTH?
The Quint got in touch with Dr Devi Shetty who denied having released any such audio clip.
“It is not me. It is somebody else’s voice. All kind of fake messages are being circulated in my name. It’s not me.”Dr Devi Shetty, Founder and Chairman Narayana Health.
We further matched the audio of the viral clip with that of Dr Shetty from an interview that he gave to English news channel NDTV nearly six days ago and the audio doesn’t match.
However, it must be noted that the person in the audio doesn’t identify himself as Dr Shetty. Further, the advice given by him is in line with what the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) says.
The Council has categorically said that the World Health Organisations’s (WHO) advice of more testing doesn’t apply to a country like India yet. But the testing strategy will change if community transmission is found and Indian enters Stage 3 of the pandemic.
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