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Kenyan Government issues new guidance on transport of COVID-19 human remains back home

The Ministry of Health (MoH) of the Republic of Kenya has provided guidelines regarding the procedures to be followed when preparing human remains whose death is linked to Covid-19 disease. The protocols are intended to ensure safety of everyone involved in handling such remains.

The Ministry of Health gives directive that is inline with the World Health Organisation (WHO) guidelines, except in hemorrhagic fevers, such as Ebola, Marburg and Cholera, dead bodies are not generally infections. Only the lungs of patients with pandemic influenza if handled improperly can be infections.

The repatriation of a body of a person who has died from Covid-19 Virus, should be carried out in adherence to the following protocols; namely:

  • The body should be transported as cargo and handled properly; hence recommends that the packaging of the remains be in line with WHO guidance and regulations for the transportation of infectious substances and IATA guidelines on handling of dangerous goods.
  • The body need to be triple packed and placed in double body bags in order to contain any possible fluid leaks.
  • The bagged body must be placed in a casket and exterior surface decontaminated for transportation.
  • The body should not be opened once placed in the casket; and
  • The staff handling the body be made aware of the case before hand and that the cargo handling crew should use appropriate PPE.

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 Please also note that the family/next-of-Kin to the deceased will also need to obtain clearance from MoH, in respect of repatriation of the remains for burial.

The Ministry of health can therefore be contacted via the following address:

Office of the Director General for Health;

Afya House, Cardinal Road

P.O Box 30016-00100

Nairobi

Email Address: dghealth2019@gmail.com

Tel: +254 20 2717077

Source: Kenya High Commission

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