The aftermath of the death of a loved one is never an easy process to navigate. The situation becomes far more complex as well as emotionally challenging when a family member or friend dies in what is known as an unattended death. In fact, an unattended death not only presents challenges to family and friends but also to landlords when this type of demise occurs in a rented residence. As if all of this isn’t quite enough, in the era of the COVID-19 pandemic, a host of other particular issues can come to bear when having to address an unattended death. These call for the experienced professional assistance from an after death cleaning service. 

Understanding an Unattended Death

If you are like many individuals, you may think you understand what technically is meant by the term “unattended death.” Many people assume that an unattended death is one in which an individual passes on outside the presence of a doctor or other healthcare provider. These people understandably conclude that this type of death is one that is not attended by a medical professional, typically in a hospital or hospice setting.

On some level, this understanding of what is meant is at least partially correct. An unattended death indeed, is one in which no medical personnel are on hand. However, from a technical standpoint, the reference to unattended death means a good deal more. An unattended death is one that occurs not only with no medical personnel around but no one present at all. In addition, an unattended death is also one that is not immediately discovered. Indeed, a synonym for unattended death is undiscovered death. The terrible reality of unattended death is that a good amount of time might elapse before the remains are discovered. 

Unattended Death From COVID-19

During the COVID-19 pandemic, an unattended death presents an added risk to family, landlords, emergency personnel, and funeral home personnel. There are and will continue to be people who die from what proves to be complications from COVID-19 without anyone present at the time of their passing. For example, an individual who lives alone may contract COVID-19 and be unable or unwilling to seek medical assistance on their own. The possibility exists that such a person might die alone and the death may not be discovered for a matter of days.

There is a lack of precise clarity at this time regarding completely understanding the means of transmission of this coronavirus. The risk of infection does exist if a person is exposed to the remains of an individual who was infected with COVID-19 at the time of death. Moreover, surfaces and objects in the residence of a person infected with COVID-19 will also be contaminated with the novel coronavirus. Simply, entering into the premises of a family member, friend, or tenant who has died as the result of COVID-19 can expose a person to the prospect of a coronavirus infection.

Unattended Death Cleaning and Disinfection During the COVID-19 Pandemic

In addition to not necessarily having the most comprehensive definition of an unattended death, many people also understandably lack in-depth knowledge of the human decomposition process. The human decomposition process starts the very moment a person dies. Within a couple of days, signs of human decomposition are evident on and around the remains. 

The human decomposition process results in the release of harmful pathogens from human remains. Pathogens are biological substances that have the potential to cause serious illness, even fatal illness, in a person who comes into contact with these viruses or bacteria. 

While exposure to dangerous pathogens is a real possibility when an individual comes upon an unattended death or when an individual is responsible for unattended death cleaning, an added risk exists if a death scene is contaminated with COVID-19. The reality is that in a situation involving the aftermath of an unattended death, professional biohazard remediation is strongly recommended. In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, professional assistance from after death cleaning services is even more important.

Experienced after death cleaning services take a comprehensive approach to remediating the aftermath of an unattended death during the COVID-19 pandemic. The safe execution of unattended death cleaning and disinfection underpins the entire remediation process.

Experienced after death cleaning services begin the process of remediation following an unattended death by safely and appropriately eliminating any biomatter. Once that is completed, an after death cleaning service sanitizes the premises to eradicate any dangerous pathogens, including COVID-19.

The human decomposition process results in the presence of overpowering foul odors. The elimination of these odors is another component of the remediation assistance provided by after death cleaning services. The ultimate objective of an unattended death cleaning service in the era of COVID-19 is to restore the premises where this type of passing occurred to a fully livable condition. 

Author

Emily Kil

Co-Owner of Eco Bear Biohazard Cleaning Company

Together with her husband, Emily Kil is co-owner of Eco Bear, a leading biohazard remediation company in Southern California. An experienced entrepreneur, Emily assisted in founding Eco Bear as a means of combining her business experience with her desire to provide assistance to people facing challenging circumstances. Emily regularly writes about her first-hand experiences providing services such as biohazard cleanup, suicide cleanup, crime scene cleanup, unattended death cleanup, infectious disease disinfection and other types of difficult remediations in homes and businesses.