Coronavirus has reshaped the experience of dying as family members bid their final goodbyes through video calls

Patients suffering from Coronavirus are isolated at the hospital and family members don't have the luxury to visit them during their darkest hour, as the risk of contagion is high. After their death, the same family members are not allowed to conduct the funeral or even look at the dead body, as that's forbidden to curtail the spread of the virus.

Since meeting in person is now off the charts, people are having to use video calls to bid their last goodbyes to dying family members. In the UK, a patient with coronavirus was taken off the ventilator at a hospital and his wife and two children were unable to be with him, but watched at home via video call, after an agreement from staff at the Intensive Care Unit.


The situation is sad and heartbreaking

A hospital insider revealed that it's the least the staff can do to ease the pain of the family members to watch their loved ones one last time through a video call. Though the scene is sad and heartbreaking, it's the need of the hour to bid their final goodbyes. "It is heartbreaking that he died without his family being able to hold his hands or giving him a goodbye kiss but at least they saw him in his final moments. If it's something we (NHS staff) can do for people in this difficult crisis, it's the least we can do,'' said an insider, who wished to remain anonymous to the Guardian.

''Not everybody can see or handle these things but giving that option to everybody is something we can do to perhaps make the pain go away. We know there are many more to come."


Coronavirus is reshaping the experience of dying

Dr Rachel Clarke, a Palliative Care Specialist and author of Dear Life, said that she's aware of videolink farewells and stressed on the sad fact that Coronavirus has reshaped the way people experience death, without being in company of their loved ones. "Coronavirus is profoundly reshaping the experience of dying. Ordinarily, a crucial component of good palliative care is close, intimate, tender support of a patient at their bedside. The power of human touch, human presence, cannot be overestimated in conveying compassion, care and tenderness,'' she said to the Guardian.

"Yet coronavirus patients in intensive care cannot be visited by families - the infection risk is too great. That means loved ones are cut off from their families at precisely the time they need them most. Tablet, smartphones, videolinks of every kind are being used as alternatives to face to face contact, but of course cannot replace it."

Related topics : Coronavirus