Patients with the COVID-19 corona virus are increasing every day, and so are those who die. Therefore, the Ministry of Religion also requested that their bodies be treated specifically.
Acting Director General of Catholic Community Guidance Aloma Sarumaha said the protocol was issued as a joint guide if someone died. In principle, the management of COVID-19 patient’s remains is carried out by hospital health workers who have been determined by the Ministry of Health.
But Judy Melinek, a forensic pathologist in the San Francisco Bay Area, who has performed autopsies in many different circumstances has a special message. According to him, the COVID pandemic posed new challenges in protecting himself and his colleagues and limiting the spread of the deadly virus.
“We are used to dealing with infectious pathogens such as tuberculosis, hepatitis and HIV. “COVID-19 is different only because there is currently no treatment, and it’s tougher because it sticks around corpses after they die,” Melinek said as quoted by the Times of Israel.
“[COVID-19] is a respiratory pathogen and can be transmitted through droplets, but also through the patient’s blood. Even though people who die don’t cough, they can release bodily fluids while being moved or transported, “he added.
Melinek said that so far the coronavirus outbreak did not significantly increase its workload. Because, he and his colleagues in the coroner’s office should not do an autopsy on the victim’s body, if the hospital doctor who treats the patient states that the cause of death is COVID-19.
“So if someone dies at home, we will be notified, but again, if the person who died has a doctor who can claim that the death was caused by a coronavirus infection, then the person who died does not need an autopsy,” he explained.
According to him, during this pandemic, it will not function as usual for Melinek. A person may die from violence or an unexpected death, but that does not exclude them from being positive and asymptomatic corona patients before dying.