What there is to know
- 750 NYers who died at the start of the pandemic whose bodies were not claimed by family are held in long-term temporary storage in Brooklyn
- Three of New York City’s five boroughs rank among America’s six deadliest COVID counties, Johns Hopkins data shows
- Families who lost loved one during coronavirus pandemic can apply for FEMA reimbursement of funeral and burial costs up to $ 9,000
Almost 14 months after New York City reported its first coronavirus-related death, around 750 people who have died at the height of the pandemic and whose bodies have not been claimed are still being held temporarily long-term by the office. forensic scientist on a dock in the Sunset Park neighborhood of Brooklyn.
The temporary morgue was created at the worst of the pandemic, as more than 800 New Yorkers died from the virus every day, a spokesperson for the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner told News 4.
“With sensitivity and compassion, we continue to work with individual families on a case-by-case basis during their time of grieving,” said the spokesperson.
Some families have asked for the remains of their loved ones to be buried on Hart Island, the country’s largest public cemetery, while the medical examiner’s office has encountered problems finding relatives after making initial contact.
Hart Island saw a peak in burials last year, with 2,666 burials in 2020, up from around 1,200 in a typical year. There have so far been 504 burials on Hart Island this year.
FEMA launched a hotline in mid-April to help put funeral and funeral funds in the hands of New Yorkers and other Americans who couldn’t afford the expenses.
Families who have lost someone to the virus that has decimated the lives of New Yorkers since last spring are entitled to up to $ 9,000. The FEMA hotline is 1-844-684-6333.
FEMA said on Friday it had received 17,012 requests for funeral assistance from New York State. Learn more about this program here.
To date, New York State has confirmed more than 42,200 coronavirus deaths since the start of the pandemic, including nearly 23,000 in the city alone. Confirmed deaths mean COVID-19 is listed as a cause or contributing factor on a death certificate.
The CDC estimates that thousands upon thousands more deaths in the Empire State could be attributable to COVID-19 than has been reported.
The real toll can forever remain incalculable.
Brooklyn and Queens, America’s two longest-deadliest COVID counties, now rank second (10,223) and fifth (9,779) respectively among U.S. counties in COVID deaths, according to data from Johns Hopkins. The Bronx is sixth (6492).