Covid-19 deaths: Exclusive cremation says new guideline

1 April 2020 12:44 am - 16     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}


Updated guidelines on Covid-19 related deaths issued by the Ministry of Health on Tuesday state that the Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) of the disposing of bodies of those who succumb to coronavirus would exclusively be cremation.

The fourth update on the Provisional Clinical Practice Guidelines on COVID-19 suspected and confirmed patients indicate that cremation remains the best practice to avoid further spread of the disease.

Judicial Medical Officers across Sri Lanka were issued the SOP to be followed in the event of a death a coronavirus infected person last week. Accordingly, the guideline stated that remains of all those who succumb to the disease would be cremated within 24 hours. 

However, with reports of the second death due to coronavirus in Sri Lanka, many individuals and groups raised their concerns over the right of a Covid-19 infected person to be buried. Among them was Leader of Sri Lanka Muslim Congress Rauff Hakeem who, issuing a statement condemned the regulation. "It is unfortunate, regrettable and of course reprehensible that the Janaza of the Negombo Victim of the Covid 19 virus had been cremated without permitting the burial as is ordained in our faith," the former Minister said in a Facebook post. 

The guideline issued by the Ministry today however states that bodies of confirmed and suspected persons as well as those with a suggestive history of the disease must be cremated. The body should never be washed under any circumstance, has to be placed in a sealed body bag and a coffin while the disposal of bodies must be monitored by police, Ministry of Health and Public Health Inspectors, the guideline said. (Kalani Kumarasinghe)

  Comments - 16

  • BUSHEL Wednesday, 01 April 2020 01:00 AM


    Sri lankan Wednesday, 01 April 2020 10:09 AM

    Exclusive cremation

    Yashaswi Liyanarachchi Wednesday, 01 April 2020 10:18 AM

    W.H.O cares? W.H.O. delayed declaration of a pandemic to please the Chinese. - A Sri Lankan in China

    Thomas Wednesday, 01 April 2020 10:32 AM

    I believe in Italy , Spain all dead bodies were buried

    DNH Wednesday, 01 April 2020 10:32 AM


    Channa Wednesday, 01 April 2020 09:32 AM

    Dont try to complain on petty things at this crucial juncture. Has Iran buried the bodies ??? Pl see how this Islamic fundamentalist country is coping up with the crisis situation ?

    Dr.Siri Wednesday, 01 April 2020 10:19 AM

    Think about the reality

    Ronnie Bugger Wednesday, 01 April 2020 10:27 AM

    Hello, Leader of the SLMC. Please avoid trying to score 'brownie points' from among your Muslim community. Apparently, they have been creating the worse damage as we gather from the media. A Muslim is no different from any other person when it comes to cremation as a solution, so be it.

    charith seneviratne Wednesday, 01 April 2020 06:02 PM

    Jayawewa , Jayawewa. All these Muslim politicians who are trying to score points have been and will be further distanced by the Muslim society it self. Damn good and they should be alienated totally. When these politicians try to make a noise prosecute and throw them behind bars.

    Wesley G Wednesday, 01 April 2020 07:17 PM

    One thing, your decision is welcome, but do not change to bury these deaths , which will bring unnecessary troubles,due to political pressure.

    Nandaguptha Liyanage Wednesday, 01 April 2020 09:00 PM

    This is a pandemic, one has to understand its danger, rather than trying to make a religious issue and score points among the members of the particular religion. There are many times in the history these believers got killed in plan crashes and got into ashes. Among the thousands of bomb victims in the middle east do not get to the opportunity for these traditions. Sri Lanka is in a war against the greatest pandemic in the history of the world. These politicians are trying to make political divisions and spread hate, rather than helping the government to stop spreading the virus..

    George Harry Wednesday, 01 April 2020 11:16 PM

    If one's rights violated, it is a heinous crime.

    decentgent Thursday, 02 April 2020 04:45 PM

    As per WHO guidelines of Covid 19 burial is permitted and Sri Lanka govt too amended its guidelines accordingly, and this was in place at the time of the death of the Negombo victim. The following day SL decided to amend the guideline only to cremate body. Given the precaution taken, this action is justified as everyone is fighting to combat this pandemic. But an explanation to this effect would have been appreciated and accepted by the bereaved family and also the sensitive of the relevant community.

    Karlos Caine Thursday, 02 April 2020 07:27 PM

    It is disgusting. Shame on Sri Lanka. A country I though was reasonable. You guys are lost. I feel sorry for you. Pathetic.

    Mo Thursday, 02 April 2020 11:25 PM

    Not single European Union countries Cremated any Muslims or Jews, this not about corona pure hate.

    Periyasamy Ramesh Tuesday, 07 April 2020 11:32 PM

    The facts about the corona virus is not yet fully understood. How they are transmitted and how long they can survive and get transmitted is still being investigated. Italy

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