Davao City to shoulder cost of COVID-19 cremations
DAVAO CITY, Philippines – Mayor Sara Duterte on Friday, May 1, said the city government would shoulder the cost of cremation services for up to 300 cadavers, including those suspected of having the coronavirus disease, to ease the burden on the bereaved families.
Duterte made the announcement over the city-run Davao City Disaster Radio, even as she bared that the city government already paid for the cremation of 47 people – including suspected COVID-19 cases but whose test results had not come in yet. Twelve other cadavers are awaiting cremation, she said.
The mayor said the money for the cremation services was part of the national government's Bayanihan grant to the city amounting to P462 million.
She said doctors had recommended the cremation of patients who died of COVID-19 and those suspected of having died of the disease.
“We are covering the expenses to fast-track the cremation of cadavers. There are many cadavers for cremation because families could not come up with the money within 12 hours,” she said.
Duterte said the cost of cremation is usually between P25,000 to P35,000. (READ: The cost of dying in the Philippines: Can you afford it?)
There are at least 3 crematoriums in the city, but only two of these are operational as the 3rd one is undergoing repairs.
Duterte previously said she was considering the possibility of building a crematorium for the city.
“I was really thinking of purchasing one, because when we made an inventory there are only three crematoriums in the city,” she said in April. – Rappler.com