Tobago’s container morgue up and running

The content originally appeared on: Trinidad and Tobago Newsday

The container procured by the Division of Health, Wellness and Social Protection to store bodies at the Scarborough hospital mortuary. – DAVID REID

The 20-foot refrigerated container at the Scarborough General Hospital mortuary is now in use, says THA Secretary of Health, Wellness and Social Protection Dr Faith BYisrael.

At the weekly post-Executive Council news conference a week ago, THA Chief Secretary Farley Augustine said the container was to be installed because the morgue is full, as the island has had multiple covid19 deaths daily for most of December. This put a strain on space at the mortuary, where he said bodies were having to be stored side by side in drawers.

In a WhatsApp update on Wednesday, BYisrael said the container went into full use on Wednesday.

“The Division/TRHA is pleased to announce that the supplemental mortuary container was successfully commissioned and is in full operation effective yesterday – 29 December, 2021.”

Fourteen bodies have been moved to the container, which can hold up to 45, she said, “thereby easing the storage issue at the mortuary. Despite this additional capacity, we want to ensure that the container does not become filled to capacity as well.”

She added: “In this regard, we are still pleading with family members to make the necessary arrangements to bury their loved ones as quickly as possible.”

Previously, BYisrael said the container would cost the assembly over $100,000, but this was not the final figure. The final cost, she said, will be revealed when it becomes available.