If it’s AIDS, I have no option - Assistant Coroner

Colombo Assistant Coroner, Attorney Iresha Samaraweera said writing the death certificate of an AIDS patient cannot be exempted by writing a another disease as cause of death. She said relatives request her to write another disease instead of writing that the cause of death was AIDS, and as a result she and the staff are rendered helpless.

She said that even though the relatives request her to write down the cause of death as another substitute disease she is unable to agree to these requests even humanely.

She said that by writing down the disease AIDS, in the judicial cause of death column of the deceased’s death certificate, relatives of the deceased are constantly appealing them to consider humanitarian reasons and provide relief to the children of the deceased as it has a strong impact on everything of these children from their birth to death.

“Although I mention the name of a group of diseases which includes three venereal diseases including AIDS for those who died due to AIDS, later on the advice of an experienced forensic officer in the field I was informed that it was not very appropriate and subsequently we have no

possibility at all of agreeing in any way to the requests of relatives due to any reason,” she said. The coroner said that about one out of every 500 deaths in this country is due to AIDS, but she added that it is a good thing that the old B18 form has been modernized and a new form

has been introduced. She said that the new form is more capable of providing data needed for national disease analysis than the old form, but she noted that the form is still at the printing stage.

by Daily News Sri Lanka

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