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Kerala Kaumudi Online
Tuesday, 30 November 2021 4.43 AM IST

Deaths that occur within 30 days of testing positive for Covid will be treated as Covid deaths, Centre informs SC

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NEW DELHI: Following the Supreme Court ruling that Covid deaths should be compensated, the Centre has come up with a set of guidelines on which Covid deaths will be eligible for the issue of an official document. The guidelines were jointly issued by the Union Health Ministry and the ICMR, the Centre told the Supreme Court in an affidavit.

The guidelines stated that deaths that occur within 30 days of testing positive for Covid will be treated as Covid deaths even if the patient dies outside a hospital. However, deaths that take place due to poisoning, suicide, homicide and accident will not be considered as Covid deaths even if Covid was an accompanying condition.

"Covid-19 cases which are not resolved and have died either in hospital settings or at home, and where a medical certificate of cause of death (MCCD) in Form 4 and 4A has been issued to the registering authority as required under Section 10 of the Registration of Birth and Death (RBD) Act, 1969, will be treated as a Covid-19 death. The Registrar General of India (RGI) will issue necessary guidelines to the chief registrars of all states/UTs," said the guidelines.

The guidelines added that as per the study by ICMR, 95 per cent deaths take place within 25 days of testing positive for Covid.

"To make the scope broader and more inclusive, deaths occurring within 30 days from the date of testing or from the date of being clinically determined as a Covid-19 case, will be treated as 'deaths due to Covid-19, even if the death takes place outside the hospital/in-patient facility," the guidelines added.

The guidelines also said that a Covid-19 case, while admitted to the hospital/in-patient facility, and who continued as the same admission beyond 30 days, and died subsequently, shall be treated as a Covid-19 death.

According to the guidelines, in cases where the MCCD is not available or the next of kin of the deceased is not satisfied with the cause of death given in the MCCD and which are not covered by the aforesaid scenarios, states and UTs shall notify a committee at the district level.

"The next of kin of the deceased shall submit a petition to the district collector for the issuance of the appropriate official document for Covid-19 death. The official document will be issued in the format annexed to these guidelines by the aforesaid district-level committee after due examination and verification of all facts," said the guidelines.

The Centre said the applications for issuance of official document for Covid-19 death and for redressal of grievances shall be disposed of within 30 days of submission of the application/grievance.

The apex court had directed the Centre to submit the guidelines while considering the petitions filed by advocates Gaurav Kumar Bansal and Reepak Kansal demanding compensation of Rs 4 lakh under the Disaster Management Act for the families of the deceased.

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