Body bags were requested to maintain inventory and not because of COVID-19, says Health Ministry

Body bags were requested to maintain inventory and not because of COVID-19, says Health Ministry

Body bags were requested to maintain inventory and not because of COVID-19, says Health Ministry

Written by Zulfick Farzan

27 Apr, 2020 | 9:21 am

Colombo (News 1st);  The Health Ministry says it requested 1000 Body Bags from the International Committee of the Red Cross to maintain inventory and not because it anticipates a high death toll as a result of the present COVID-19 pandemic.

A statement from the Director-General of Health Services, Dr. Anil Jasinghe notes as a result of Sri Lanka’s successful program to combat COVID-19 the country would not experience a high death toll adding measures are in place to prevent the spread of the virus from the clusters which have been detected and isolated.

Dr. Anil Jasinghe says, the Ministry of Health always maintains its inventory at a certain level including medicines, medical equipment, and body bags, stressing it is a mandatory technical requirement.

The statement says the Ministry of Health was given an opportunity to fill up its inventory from the Coordinating Committee of the International Committee of the Red Cross and therefore, it was made use of.

Dr. Anil Jasinghe stressed, it has been a practice for many decades to place bodies of the dead as a result of any disaster and other ill-fated events in body bags and it does not apply to COVID-19 alone.

He said, for example, the bodies of the victims 2019 April Attacks were also placed in body bags and highlighted it is an internationally accepted and followed practice.

Therefore, the Director-General of Health Services said the general public need not have any unnecessary fear over the request which was made.

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