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Aug 20, 2020

Additional Guidelines for Handling of COVID-19 Cadavers

John Bodden

Today, during the Ask the Experts webcast, John Bodden explained that they are updating the procedures to provide additional guidance for the families who may experience a COVID-19 related death. These guidelines, according to Bodden, are to help reduce the spread in settings where families of ten may gather.  It is expected that the public will stick to the limitation, as mandated by law, as well as use face mask and social distance.


John Bodden, Principal Public Health Inspector, Ministry of Health

“These are some of the considerations you have to look at in terms of reducing spread from your family members. It says, the more people interact, the closer in distance the interaction is and we are talking of less than six feet and the longer the interaction lasts, the higher risk of spreading of COVID-19. So, that is something we should put in the forefront which will give credence to some of the other recommendations that we have made for the disposal of these individuals.  During an in person gathering, we ask that these activities are considered four outdoor situations where there will be adequate ventilation and reduce the contact between individuals because of the space that will be available. We also say that we want to reduce commonly used objects such as religious aids, such as rosary in the hand or something in the casket; we ask that nobody tries to make contact with the body. In the church sometimes they have where they would do a collection and pass a plate around – that is something we don’t want to do because the touching of a collection plate can help the spread of COVID-19. We also need to maintain the regulations, the S.I that has been established whereby we need to also maintain the number of persons that are attending these celebrations. We need to ensure; at this current point we are at ten and we cannot allow any more persons to be at an event than the ten that are allowed.”

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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