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Rescue workers in Bangkok explain why bodies were left on the street


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Rescue workers in Bangkok explain why bodies were left on the street

A rescue official has explained why the three bodies were left on the streets of Bangkok and the difficulties they face.

“The family of the deceased or the person who finds the body must first contact the police for investigation at the crime scene before the rescue team can collect the body for autopsy,” Mr Kraisorn Thongmuang, an ambulance driver at the Ruamkatanyu foundation.

It should be understood that the officials of the foundation do not have the authority to touch a body before the police arrive. If an error occurs, rescue officers can be prosecuted for mishandling remains. The foundation must work with specific officials to complete this operation. Special training is required for this position.

Furthermore, the ambulance crews must perform their duties under the strictest safety measures to prevent further infections. Of the bodies we collect every day, 70 per cent or 20 are those of Covid-19 patients. Each collection takes a long time because an investigation has to be started, PPE suits have to be worn and the body has to be wrapped in three layers of sterilized plastic.

Despite these complicated procedures and inadequate personnel, transport and equipment, we can retrieve four to five bodies within two hours, he added.

“Only two rescue organizations have been authorized to retrieve the bodies of Covid-19 patients in Bangkok and its environs. These are the Ruamkatanyu foundation and the Poh Teck Tung Foundation.

We are not tired or discouraged, and are willing to do our duty wholeheartedly as long as society understands that we are doing our best,” said Mr. Kraisorn.

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