By Dr NV Palkar
Anesthesiologist, Florida, USA.
here was some criticism in the media abroad that there are innumerable dead bodies from Covid which are still unclaimed and how the US social structure is in disarray.
However, there are hundreds of new immigrant families in the US that do not have any immediate family members in this country, nor do they have many relatives here! The family members back home in their homeland are frequently from poor countries, far away and do not have resources to handle this.
And, about the dead bodies still waiting to be cremated in the US. This hasn’t bothered anyone here!
There is a simple, logical explanation for this.
The US is a community of nuclear families. Let me give you an example of an actual family (and, there are several such examples). In fact, New York State has about 600 dead bodies still to be claimed.
This happened in May—June last year when things in NY were bad.
Example, there was a family of 6 people in New York City. Two people got Covid and were admitted to a hospital. By the next day, two other people in the family were admitted to ICU with Covid. By the following day, the last two people in the family were admitted to ICU with Covid.
Over the next few days, one by one, all six of them died.
There is no one in the family left to claim these bodies. The government holds such bodies and tries to contact people who they think could be related to them using information they have on their records.
Sometimes, they just can not find such a relative.
The government of New York State is preserving these bodies in cold storage in a safe place until a friend or a relative comes up to claim such a body.
I think that’s very responsible.
( The writer’s first name is Shashi)