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Coronavirus: ‘Flawed’ medical advice blamed for death of 47-year-old (updated)

intensive care unit at sotiria hospital in athens
File photo

Police said Friday they have launched an investigation into claims that a 47-year-old man who died from Covid-19 could have been saved if he had not listened to a particular doctor who had also prescribed medicines and apparently made him believe there was no need to go to hospital.

A close friend of father of three Giorgos Demetriou, who died on Wednesday after battling the virus for around a month, said he had no underlying health problems and was strong enough to knock down a wall.

Vasos Vasilliou said his friend had refused to go to hospital, following the advice of his doctor who is a Harvard graduate.

“It will pass, I am taking the medicines the doctor prescribed and if you want, I will send you his CV for you to see; I have blind trust in him,” Vasos quoted his friend as saying.

Demetriou, from Sotira in the Famagusta district, had also refused to get a vaccine.

Vasilliou said the doctor had told his friend Covid was a type of flu but despite the treatment, he kept getting worse.

“He followed his advice, took his meds, Giorgos worsened with each passing day, and he was eventually admitted to hospital in a very bad state after 10 days with oxygen levels at 64 per cent, the man could not breath,” Vasilliou said.

Demetriou, a deeply religious man, was also influenced by a particular bishop.

“He listened to him. An end must be put to this, I am crushed, lost for words.”

The secretary of the Cyprus Medical Association said they have some complaints regarding the use of unorthodox treatments involving vitamins or antibiotics, and cortisone.

He said the association was looking into those complaints.

Christos Petrou, associate professor of pharmacy at the University of Nicosia, said certain doctors prescribed drugs over the phone without even knowing who is at the other end of the line or the patient.

Police spokesman Christos Andreou said the attorney-general has ordered an investigation into the case.

Andreou said Attorney-general Giorgos Savvides had contacted the chief of police on Thursday after the case emerged on social media, instructing him to launch an investigation.

“A statement has already been taken, which is being assessed. The investigation continues to determine whether any offences have been committed by anyone,” he said.


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