The Union Ministry of Health and the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) have worked on standards for producing an "official document" in the instance of a Covid-related death.According to these guidelines, which were submitted by the Centre to the Supreme Court in a case demanding damages for Covid deaths, those cases that are diagnosed through an RT-PCR
Molecular Test/ Rapid Antigen Test, or that have been clinically determined by a physician in a hospital or in-patient facility while one is admitted there will be recognised as Covid cases.Despite the fact that an ICMR study found that Covid-19 deaths happen within 25 days of a person testing positive, the government has decided to consider deaths that occur “within 30 days from the date of testing or from the date of being clinically determined as a Covid-19 case…as deaths due to Covid-19 even if the death takes place outside the hospital/ in-patient facility,” according to the guidelines.
This is done in order to "to make the scope (of the provision) broader and more inclusive."Besides this, “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… has been issued to the registering authority as required under Section 10 of the Registration of Birth and Death Act, 1969, will be treated as a Covid-19 death”.Even if the viral infection is an accompanying illness, deaths caused by poisoning, suicide, violence, or accidents will not be treated as Covid-19 deaths, according to the guidelines.In response to the Supreme Court's instructions,
The Centre filed an affidavit in the case of separate petitions filed by Advocates Gaurav Kumar Bansal and Reepak Kansal seeking Rs 4 lakh ex-gratia for Covid-19 victims.The Court had asked that the Centre to create simplified rules for the distribution of official documents to family members of Covid-19 victims, which would also aid them in obtaining correction of papers given by municipal or other authorities in connection with the death.
The Court stated during the hearing on September 3 that it had granted directives on June 30 to simplify standards for the issue and revision of death certificates/official papers showing the exact cause of death, namely, "Death due to Covid-19," in order for dependents to collect welfare benefits. It wanted to know why the guidelines were taking so long to establish.According to the guidelines, if a family is unhappy with the reason of death stated on the municipal certificate, the state or union territory must convene a committee of officials, medical experts, and subject specialists.
The Office of the Registrar General of India has also issued a circular for the provision of a Medical Certificate of Cause of Death to the nearest of kin of Covid deceased, the Centre informed the Supreme Court.The guidelines state that applications for granting official documents and redressing grievances must be completed within 30 days of submission.
Source: The Indian Express
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