Kolkata

Relatives keep body in freezer for 48 hours

Doctor waited for COVID-19 test report to come in before writing death certificate

The family of a 71-year-old patient, who was suspected to be COVID-19 positive, was forced to preserve the body in a freezer for almost 48 hours, in Kolkata.

The patient died hours after his samples were taken on Monday. A relative said the doctor did not issue a death certificate and asked the family to wait for the test report.

“The doctor said he possibly died of cardiac arrest but since his COVID-19 test report was pending, he would not issue a death certificate. He asked us to preserve the body until the report came in,” the relative said.

The family, which resides in an apartment on Amherst Street in north Kolkata, said it approached the police and civic officials, but no one helped. The family then got a freezer to preserve the body. The report came late on Tuesday. On Wednesday, afternoon, two days after the death and 40 hours after the body was put in the freezer, civic workers came to take the body for cremation.

Atin Ghosh, a member of the Kolkata Municipal Corporation’s (KMC) Board of Administrators, said the KMC intervened when the matter was brought to its notice.

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Printable version | Aug 5, 2020 5:15:55 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/kolkata/relatives-keep-body-in-freezer-for-48-hours/article31975151.ece

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