- “Kindly do not share such image,” wrote Soumitra Chatterjee’s daughter
- “We are extremely upset,” she wrote in a Faceboook post
- The actor was admitted to the hospital on October 6
A photograph of veteran actor Soumitra Chatterjee lying in his hospital bed in Kolkata went viral on social media on Tuesday and prompted a pained appeal from his daughter, to give the 85-year-old actor the “privacy and respect that he so richly deserves”. Not only the photograph but also rumours of his death and his detailed medical bulletin going public distressed the family. “Amidst this time of huge anxiety over the health of my COVID-afflicted father, we are extremely upset, sad and heartbroken to find unauthorized pictures of him from the ICU and his medical bulletin being shared widely on social media,” Poulami Bose, Mr Chatterjee’s daughter posted on her Facebook page.
Distressed by the invasion of privacy, daughter Poulami Bose said in her Facebook post: “Kindly do not share such image/information and do not heed or indulge in rumour mongering. This is the urgent appeal of my family. Your prayers and good wishes are always very welcome. Thank you.”
The medical bulletin on Tuesday said there was some “improvement” in Mr Chatterjee’s neurological condition, prompting doctors to put on hold a plan to place him on a ventilator. On Monday, he had been given respiratory assistance with a non-rebreather mask (NRBM).
On Tuesday, some reports suggested that the medical board at Belle Vue Hospital had been considering invasive respiratory support to protect Mr Chatterjee’s airways which, in other words, meant putting him on a ventilator.
Mr Chatterjee was admitted to Belle Vue on October 6, after testing positive for COVID-19 the day before. He has several co-morbidities according to the bulletin released by the hospital. They include prostate cancer, possibly in remission, for which he underwent treatment some years ago, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disorder (COPD). He had been admitted to hospital in August last year with severe pneumonia.
On October 9, he had to be shifted from a general bed to intensive care after developing COVID-19 related encephalopathy. Mr Chatterjee has also been given a course of Remdesivir.