The health department of the Philippines has amended its regulations concerning the disposal of the remains of dead humans. It now prohibits the open viewing of the bodies of those who died of "dangerous communicable diseases."
An administrative order was released this month that strictly enforced bodies of afflicted individuals must be contained in durable airtight containers or cadaver bags at the point of death with a biohazard tag attached.
The modified guideline stated, "This container shall not be opened for viewing or any other purpose prior to burial or cremation."
Among the five infectious diseases included in the new measure were: Hepatitis B and C, invasive group A streptococcal infections, rabies, Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) and transmissible spongiform encephalopathies (mad cow disease and Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease).
The following diseases were declared "dangerous" by the health department before: HIV-AIDS, meningococcemia, plague, viral hemorrhagic fevers and yellow fever.
The health department further said that violation of the new administrative order would be tantamount for closure of the cemetery and revocation of permit.
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