A 75-year-old COVID-19 patient from Armpora Sopore in north Kashmir’s Baramulla district has died at a hospital here, making it the fifth death in Jammu and Kashmir due the novel coronavirus, said officials on Friday.
They said the elderly had tested positive for the dreaded disease earlier this month.
Confirming the death, Dr Shafa A Deva, Medical Superintendent SKIMS Bemina told newsagency GNS that the septuagenarian was admitted to the hospital, one of the exclusively Covid-19 management facility, on April 02. “The man was 70 plus. He was hypertensive and also was suffering from Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD Asthma),” she added.
With due compliance to the guidelines by the Ministry of Health, she said the body would be handed over to the family of the elderly man for last rites.
While the main driver of transmission of COVID-19 is through droplets, the guidelines underline that there is unlikely to be an increased risk of the infection from a dead body to health workers or family members. However, those handling the body are required to follow standard precautions (surgical mask, gloves).
Religious rituals such as reading from religious scripts and any other last rites that do not require touching of the body can be allowed but bathing, kissing, hugging, etc. of the body has been advised to be strictly avoided. The funeral or burial staff and family members are also required to perform hand hygiene after burial or cremation.
With 75-year-old’s death, the fatality due to COVID-19 has gone up to four in Kashmir and five across J&K.
There are at least 314 COVID-19 cases in J&K and more than 250 were added this month. From the time the first COVID-19 case was announced in J&K on March 09, it took about three weeks for the cases to reach 50-mark. It took the next five days for the cases to double to cross 100-mark and next five days to cross 200-mark.
From 52 reported cases by the end of last month, the J&K reached a cumulative tally of 106 cases on April 5.
Till date, the officially confirmed tally stands at 314—54 in Jammu and 260 in Kashmir. Five people have died due to the deadly infection in the J&K while 38—9 in Jammu and 29 in Kashmir divisions have recovered and discharged, leaving the active cases in Kashmir to 227 and 44 in Jammu.