The ailing man, who was suffering from asthma, was brought to the Government General Hospital in Anantapur's Dharmavaram at 3 am on Friday. He was reportedly left unattended under a tree by health workers for hours.
The man died six hours later, after he was denied any medical attention. The body was then disinfected and samples were taken to test if the deceased was COVID-19 positive or not.
The hospital authorities, meanwhile, have denied any allegations of negligence. The hospital superintendent said that the deceased's family didn't come to GGH initially.
"They tried to get admission in private hospitals. They went to many private hospitals but couldn't get admission and finally came to GGH. By the time they came, the patient was in severe condition. Immediately the IP sheet was given. There was not much delay," the health officials said.
They added that the patient was already in critical condition when he died.
Telugu Desam Party National General Secretary Nara Lokesh condemned the incident and expressed concern over the rising number of COVID-19 cases and a spike in fatalities due to the deadly virus.
He alleged that nobody was taking responsibility to provide timely medical attention to patients suffering from severe COVID symptoms in Andhra Pradesh.
Hitting out at the ruling government, the leader said, "People are falling victim and dying on the roads because of the dreaded virus. The Dharmavaram incident exposed the deteriorating situation that is prevailing all over the state. It is obvious that CM Jaganmohan Reddy's corona publicity gimmicks are not saving people's lives."