Most infections since April – 8361, 133 people died. The latest data from the Ministry of Health are terrifying. Young and old are dying, especially those who are not vaccinated. For families, this is a double tragedy – they cannot see the dead of COVID-19 before being buried. Material of the magazine “Polska i Świat”.
For Teresa Imiołek, November 1 this year will be extremely difficult – she will remember the relatives she lost during the third wave of the pandemic. Six months ago, she buried her mother and two weeks later her brother, who died of COVID-19. – This is terrible. We did not say goodbye, we did not see him, we do not know if there is a brother there or if there is someone there. The urn is closed, I have no brother, no goodbye – he says.
– They took him to the hospital, only a text message wrote that he was in a very serious condition, that it must be over, save yourself, because we both also had the virus. He says: I don’t think I will come back, bye, bye. Those were the last words. They’re already connecting me to a respirator. They connected, he didn’t speak again. Less than four days and he hasn’t woken up anymore. These were the last words – he recalls.
Burial rules for people who died from COVID-19
After the death of a loved one caused by the coronavirus, the family cannot see the body, cannot say goodbye. The rules are very restrictive. – If the death occurs in a hospital, the deceased are unfortunately placed in plastic bags, abundantly disinfected so as not to endanger anyone. These are very difficult situations for everyone, admits the director of the Funeral Home Służew Jan Szczuciński.
– When there is an exhibition of a coffin in the chapel, we do not open this coffin either – explains Andrzej Kus from Zakład Usług Komunalnych in Szczecin. Many people find it hard to accept that they will never see a loved one again. “ We very often come across pressure to show the body we have in our morgue as a result of COVID-19 death. Of course, it was not possible – admits Adam Franczyk from the Municipal Cemetery Service Office in Częstochowa.
According to the regulations, the corpse of an infected person is to be put in a bag along with clothes for safety reasons. Identification takes place by showing the family a photo. – These possibilities are very limited only to the confrontation of the photo with the reality that remains in the memory and the awareness that we have duly fulfilled and the deceased in the coffin is definitely a close person from the family – says Szczuciński.
In the hospital, while the patient is still struggling for his life, he cannot be visited. A phone call is left, if someone still has the strength to answer or write. The staff also helps. – We agree with the family that we will connect, and as a rule, it is doctors through FaceTime that we connect with the family. This is the only contact that is possible – explains Dr. Wojciech Dworzański, coordinator of the Temporary Hospital in Radom.
The majority of those who die from COVID-19 are unvaccinated
– Most people who die from COVID-19 infection, unfortunately, are unvaccinated people, of various ages, from 30 to 80, 90 years old – emphasizes Dworzański.
– Of course, there are deaths in vaccinated people, but as a rule they actually die of other causes. COVID-19 is an additional disease, he explains. Over 76,000 people have died from COVID-19 since the beginning of the pandemic in Poland.
Main photo source: TVN24