Tarn Taran, August 9
The cremation of a suspected Covid-19 patient performed in Patti here on Sunday is raising many eyebrows and officials of the Health Department are holding the patient’s family responsible for negligence.
The victim has been identified as Sardool Singh (38), son of Piara Singh, who belonged to a Dalit family. He was admitted to the Civil Hospital, Patti, four days ago as he was suffering from fever. The doctors referred him to the local district-level Civil Hospital from where he was further referred to Guru Nanak Dev Hospital, Amritsar, on Saturday evening as a suspected Covid-19 patient. During his four-day stay in the Patti and Tarn Taran Civil Hospitals he was not tested for the Covid-19 disease.
Kuldeep Singh died on way to the Amritsar hospital on Saturday night. The body was handed over to the parents for cremation.
The victim’s father Piara Singh said after the bath, they kept the body outside the house when suddenly a police party appeared on the spot and told them that the body should be cremated as per the Covid-19 protocols. The family members were given five PPE kits before cremating the body, but no other precautions were adopted. He said no official from the Heath Department and the civil administration was wearing PPE kits.
Civil Surgeon Anoop Kumar said the body was cremated following the Covid-19 protocols. He said the victim was suffering from several ailments for years. The victim’s family members took the body to home without informing the Health Department officials on Saturday night.
He said as soon as Dr Beer Inder Kaur, Senior Medical Officer (SMO), Patti, got to know of the incident this morning, she immediately instructed the police to ensure that the body was cremated as per the Covid-19 protocols. The CS said the family was responsible for all the lapses. She said all members of the family would be tested for the Covid-19 disease.
Kuldeep Singh, a cousin of the victim who was accompanying the body at the time of leaving the hospital, said there were so many lapses committed on the part of officials of the Health Department. He said the body remained in the open throughout the night raising the risk of the spread of infection to other people.
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