UP medical anthropologist urges DOH to relax restrictions on kin of COVID-19 dead | Inquirer News

UP medical anthropologist urges DOH to relax restrictions on kin of COVID-19 dead

/ 11:15 AM May 15, 2020

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Health (DOH) should relax restrictions on relatives of patients who died of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), a medical anthropologist and professor at the University of the Philippines (UP) said Friday.

Dr. Michael Tan, also former chancellor at UP Diliman, noted that the World Health Organization (WHO) has advised that corpses of people who died of the coronavirus disease are no longer infectious as they can no longer spread droplets by coughing or sneezing.


“This is where I also ask the DOH to loosen up their restrictions, kasi sa ngayon within 12 hours kailangan ilibing or i-cremate (because right now, protocols require that the bodies should be cremated within 12 hours),” he said in a media forum hosted by the DOH.

Tan said although relatives of the deceased COVID-19 patient should be permitted to see the remains, touching or embracing should not be permitted.


In making this suggestion, Tan pointed out that even in hospitals, COVID-19 patients are just  barred from having direct contact with their friends and families.

“Tapos [kapag] namatay, ang mga kamag-anak pinagbawal pa rin pumasok sa kwarto, and then once na pinasok sa body bag at na-zip na ‘yan (body of patient), hindi na pwedeng buksan. They will never see their loved ones again and then diretso na sa crematorium,” he said.

(When patients die, their relatives are not allowed to enter the hospital room, and then once their bodies are placed in a body bag and it has been zipped, the body bag can no longer be opened again. Their loved ones will never see them again and their bodies will just be brought to the crematorium.)

A total of 790 deaths were recorded from the 11,876 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the country as of Thursday morning. A total of 2,337 patients have recovered.


COVID-19 fatalities should be cremated within 12 hours

Another COVID-19 patient tells story of survival

‘Because it’s his sworn duty’: A tribute to a Filipino nurse who died of COVID-19


For more news about the novel coronavirus click here.
What you need to know about Coronavirus.
For more information on COVID-19, call the DOH Hotline: (02) 86517800 local 1149/1150.

The Inquirer Foundation supports our healthcare frontliners and is still accepting cash donations to be deposited at Banco de Oro (BDO) current account #007960018860 or donate through PayMaya using this link .

Read Next
Don't miss out on the latest news and information.

Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.

TAGS: Coronavirus, coronavirus disease, COVID-19, DoH, Michael Tan
For feedback, complaints, or inquiries, contact us.

© Copyright 1997-2021 INQUIRER.net | All Rights Reserved

We use cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. By continuing, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. To find out more, please click this link.