TWO mobile mortuaries are going to be provided by the Australia Government to support National Referral Hospital’s capacity of availability of morgue.
That’s according to Ms Pauline McNeil Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Health and Medical Services when speaking during a radio talk back show. Sunday.
She said Australia will support NRH with the two mobile mortuaries.
“We are expecting mobile mortuaries from the assistance of our partners, so we are expecting two mobile mortuaries from the government of Australia to support NRH capacity in terms of mortuary availability,” she said.
Chief Executive Office of National Referral Hospital Mr George Malefoasi revealed in the talk back show that the new mortuary has now been filled to its capacity.
“At the moment our morgue is full.
“We are really out of space with the capacity of 15 spaces,” he said.
He added, when taking home death body for burial, it covers certain protocol as of limiting number of people to carry the coffin.
This is in light of the Covid-19 transmission in the country.
He said they will do risk assessment on specific death and also to limit gathering.
Dr Malefoasi said, the old mortuary will be used to keep COVID-19 related deaths while the new mortuary will be used for normal deaths in the hospital.
“The plan in place at the NRH is to accommodate those who die with Covid-19 at the old mortuary.
“The old morgue has the six chambers. The new mortuary will be reserved for other deaths.”
Secretary to PM, Dr Jimmie Rodgers said the policy regarding the COVID-19 related death is that there will be no church funeral.
“The corpse will be sealed, the grave prepared, then the body will go straight from the Hospital morgue to the grave site.”
He added, the gathering during the death will not exceed 10, and six people is the number they are looking at.
The funeral will be supervised by the health team.
“It’s sad that we will not gather to farewell our loved ones at this time but it is essential that we allow it to happen because in some countries they don’t allow relatives to farewell their love ones. They go straight from hospital to the grave,” he said.
Meanwhile, Dr Rogers is calling on people that have their loved ones at the mortuary to clear the mortuary because it now reaches its maximum capacity.
By LACHLAN EDDIE