Bhubaneswar: The Odisha Government today directed all district administrations and Civic Bodies to dispose the bodies of the Covid-19 patients in a dignified manner in consultation with the bereaved family and hand over the body to the family members if the patient tests Covid negative at the time of death.
In a letter to the Collectors, Municipal Commissioners and Chief District Medical Officers, the Additional Chief Secretary, Health and Family Welfare Department, PK Mohapatra stated that all Covid protocols as per the guidelines of the Central government should be followed during the disposal of bodies.
He further directed that body of the patient can be handed over to his/her family members in case the patient was found negative for Covid-19 during death. The body must be covered in a sealed bag for the safe disposal, he stated.
“If at the time of death, the patient is found to be COVID negative, and if the relatives of the patient claim the dead body, the same may be handed over to them in a sealed body bag with advisory of it’s safe disposal, so that the last rites can be undertaken by the family as per their customary practice,” the letter read.
The Health Department also set some conditions before the District, Municipal and Hospital Authorities for handing over the dead bodies of Covid-19 negative patients to their relatives.
Mohapatra stated that family members should give an undertaking to abide by Covid-19 protocols like not opening the body bag or touching or kissing the dead body, maintaining the COVID appropriate behaviour.
The hospital or district authorities should properly sanitize the body and pack as per as per Government of India guidelines, he pointed out.