Jaipur : Keeping in mind human compassion and understanding the feelings of the general public, the state government and the Health Department have directed that the bodies of COVID infected patients should be handed over to their family members for cremation while following medical protocol.
Health Minister Dr Raghu Sharma said that the Chief Minister has directed the department to hand over the bodies of COVID infected patients to their family members for cremation, albeit with all precautions. He said the COVID pandemic is spreading rapidly in the entire country and in such a situation, the public has to be very cautious. Any kind of emotional negligence can prove fatal.
According to experts, transmission of COVID-19 infection takes place through droplets. There is no evidence of spreading of COVID infection from a dead body, if the body is handled taking all precautions and following the protocols, Sharma said.
The health minister added that as per the guidelines, it is not important to get a COVID test done for every deceased person. The COVID-19 test should be done only for those who have died of ILI or SARI. He said that the body of the deceased could be given to the family members without waiting for the test report. It is also not necessary to conduct an autopsy of each deceased. If a post mortem is done for any specific reason, then it should be done as per the guidelines issued by the Government of India.
The family members will be free to take the body for the last rites to their ancestral crematorium or graveyard by marking the information about the patient on the transparent bag as per the protocol. He said that the family members will have to inform the district administration about the body. If any family does not want to take the body of the COVID infected person then the hospital or the local authorities could perform the cremation.
The Health Minister said that a protocol has been decided to catch a glimpse of the deceased for one last time. However, touching, hugging, kissing the dead body would be prohibited. There should not be more than 20 people during the cremation and it will be necessary for them to wear a PPE kit, gloves, mask, maintain social distance and fully comply with all the other protocols. No permission from anybody is required to take a body from one district to another, he added.
Appealing to the general public, he said there should be no carelessness during the cremation.