IN THE HIGH COURT OF JUDICATURE AT MADRAS (SPECIAL ORIGINAL JURISDICTION) WRIT PETITION NO.12582 OF 2021 HA.Shrirajalakzîhmi Vs. # gp muthukumar argued
IN THE HIGH COURT OF JUDICATURE AT MADRAS (SPECIAL ORIGINAL JURISDICTION)
WRIT PETITION NO.12582 OF 2021
The Chief Secretary to Government , Government of Tamil Nadu, Secretariat, Fort St.George,
Chennai – 9 and others
STATUS REPORT FILED BY THE PRINCIPAL SECRETARY HEALTH AND FAMILY WELFARE DEPARTMENT
I, Dr.J.Radhakrishnan, I.A.S., /O, Thiru.V.Jagannathan, Hindu about aged 55 years, residing at No.65, 6th Main Road, Thiruvalluvar Nagar, Tiruvanmaiyur, Chennai — 600 041, do hereby solemnly affirm and sincerely state as follows.-
2. I am the Principal Secretary to the Government, Health and Family Welfare Department, Government of Tamil Nadu, Fort St. George, Chennai — 600 009 and as such I am well acquainted with the facts of the case
3. I am filing this Status Report in view of the directions of this Hon’ble Court, dated 08.07.2021 in the above Writ Petition.
4. I respectfully submit that, Under Section 8(1) (b) of the Registration of Birth and Death Act, 1969 casts the responsibility of the Medical officer i’n charge of the Medical Institution lo the report the occurrence of the vital events of the institution to the jurisdictional birth and death Registrar.
In the cases of Covid-19 related deaths also the provision of the Registration of Birth and Death Act, 1969 under section 8(1) (b) is implemented properly by the hospÎtdl äUthorities towards reporting the deaths.
Section 10 (2) & (3) of the Act reads CS ÎOllows:
10(2) – in any area, the State Government, having regard lo the f cilities
aVaiIabIo thoroin in this behalf, may I*fl*!’* that El certificate ‹as to //›c cn‹isc of
y git› shall bo obtaii›od by tfi0 **’*’S”*’ “”’ SU”’ ‘”’SAN *”‘ ‘” ” ” ‘””” *’
it1ay bo proscril1ed.
] (Ç)- wh« ih» St»io GoV*+^^”O ‘I’ has required undor Sub-section (2) //›•e/
as to the caUS@Ot del” S a” b• ObtaiFtEid, in the event
of ihe death of ractitioner, the
arty person who, during his !i3S!i f USS waS attended by a medlCaI p
n›adicaI práctitionor shall, áfl@ftlha da0th of that parson, torthwith, iSSUG withoul
Charging any fea, to the person reqUired under this Act to give ! tO*fTta!! ’I C€lFI«ernii›g the death, a certifiCat in the prescribed form stating Io the besl of his knowledge and belief the cause of death; and the certificate shall be received aFId delivered by such person to the Registrar gat the time of giving information
concerning the death as required by this ACI.”
The Certificate as to the cause death required under sub section (3) of Section 10 is issued in form 4 / 4A, if the deceased was attended by a Medical
Practitioner during his last illness. The Registrar will collect the form 4 / 4A along with the death reporting form towards the death registration. ”
The above provisions of the Registration of Birth and Death Act, 1969 and rule 7 is properly implemented in the State towards reporting death for Registration.
5. It is respectfully submitted that, under the above circumstances and factors mentioned above, the provision of Registration of Birth and Death Act, 1969 is properly followed by the Medical Institution in reporting the covid-19
deaths and recording cause of death as per ICMR guidelines in all over the State
of Tamil Nadu.
6. It is also submitted that the Government of Tamil Nadu is duly following ICMR guidelinee on appropriáte recordiFlg iFl COVID-19 related deaths in India dUIy fOllowin the claSSifiCation prescribed by World Health Organization (WHO) It is suhmitted thál GOVi3fnment hav6 COnstiyUted a coMrnittee h áded by Dil’eCtor of
Medical snd Rural Heahh S@/y¡•a» With airectof of PubliC Hcáhh and Preventive
) @, lf @É ** Medicg| çg G t and City H6ahh Oñwer of Greater
Chennai Corporation as mf3mbers to cjgntinUously scrutiny, reconcile, rectify the
OVid-1 df2ath ^f2PO S O*I Al Wf2ekly basis IO lVOid omission and to rectify the defects then and there. Further it is »Ubmitted that the Death certificates (Form -6) shall not have cause of death aS per section 17(1) (b) of the Registration of Births
and Deaths Act, 1969. The cause of death is intimated to the kin through death intimation form by the Medical ln6titUtig
7. It is submitted that, The Hon’ble Supreme Court of India in its order dated 30.06.2021 in W.P.(Civil)No.539 of 2021, has ordered that
“xxx 2) The Appropriate Authority is directed to issue simplified guidelines for issuance of Death Certificates/official document stating the exact cause of death, i.e., “Death due to Covid-19″, to the family members of the deceased who died due to Covid-19. While issuing such guidelines, the observations made herein above in paragraph 13 be borne in mind
Such guidelines may also provide the remedy to the family members of the deceased who died due to Covid-19 for correction of the death certificate/official document issued by the appropriate authority, if they are not satisfied with the cause of death mentioned in the death certificate/official document issues by the appropriate authority; and
The Hon’ble High Court of Madras in its order dated 11/06/2021 has ordered that
“xxxx 4. Apart from the fact that the accurate reporting or recording of deaths would help in studies being undertaken to deal with a pandemic of this nature in future, the immediate concern in some cases is that the relief that the family of a person who died due to Covid-
19 is otherwise’ entitled to may nof be available unless the death
certificate attributes the cause of death to Covid-19.
5. Without attempting Io go into the specialised domain of doctors and persons trained in such regard, it is elementary that the major ai/ment suffered by a person may result ultimately in the heart being a//acked and the death due to SUch attack. HoweVer the cauSe Of thi
death in such a c‹•e m»y no! !* ^9o•opriaiØ)y altrlbuiad to just ø h88/ øłtaCk, but thø underłyinB*®ÂS n ^ US heaJ bølng aitackad oughl to he ægaÆed as the rea/ *S • SP h !t to be done in case of dealhs tńggeæd oe by Covid-1/ ®V *I !’* U€ł pł3rson suHered from Co-
6. It is necä,ggØ that TI ä99f”Opriate Study be coftdLłcted by ^ specïa/ísed team, if necessac. !! + uld Q(St żiO fit and pmpeł“ tO require death certiûcafes already iSSU8d IO b y ’Vi ed i( p€tC€łSSary; if Only not to deny the relief due to the fí3miI1 of the deceased in tems of the severa/ schemes announced bÿ the Central and the Stale
7. It is hoped that a preliminary response of the State would be avai/able when the matter appears next a fortnight hence. befoæ the
Issue is addressed in a more detailed manner.”
8. It is submitted that, based on the orders of the Supreme Court of India, the DepuŞ Director General, Disaster Management Cell, the Government of India, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (Disaster Management Cell) has furnished the following Guidelines for OĞcial Document for COVID-19 Death (issued in compliance to the Hon’ble Supreme Court order dated 30.06.2021 in W P (Civil) No. 539 and W.P. (Civil) No. 554 of 2021):-
Sinæ the baginning of the CovÒ-19 pandemic, Indian Council of Medical Reeearch (ICMR) snd Mintctry of Haa#h ØDd Fsm’ eFara havs been issuing s/łeae« ğUÎÖ6lifłes to Stat6S / UTs bag0ó OU OftÓ HeaM Organčation’c f HO) gtjjąąț¡g g Ą gjgğgjg ț prs4 pją rep@ying Cell dØath«, R6levant
țşÇ¡çgyę jją @yțp / țjȚş yyyy ș tygj/şgğ Øn corrØCŻ recofding o( deQßã
rata1ab @ Coyd•1g Hon’gțg p t çpufł in Wnt P ht n (C !l) No S3
554 of 2021 directed the Central g I ‘.[y I’•Flt to issue simplified guidelines for ÍSSUEl’Cf ‘• f O’ CÍá DO*U”f ‘.’I! rf3’!EIting IO COVID-19 deaths to the family f2 b£2rS ” !hf2 deCf2áSed, whO dif2d du£2 tO COVID-19. Hon’ble Court had
directed that such guidelines may also provided the remedy to the family members of the deceased who died due to COVID-19 for correction of the Medical Certificate of Cause Of Df3ath / Official Document issued by the appropriate authority.
2. Guiding Principles
i. COVID-19 cases, for the purpose of these Guidelines, are those which are diagnosed through a positive RT-PCR / Molecular Tests / RAT OR clinically determined through investigations in a hospital / in-patient facility by a treating physician, while admitted in the hospital / in-patient facility.
ii. Deaths occurring due to poisoning, suicide, homicide, deaths due to accident etc. will not be considered as COVID-19 deaths even if COVID-19 is an accompanying condition.
3. Scenario based approach and interventions
i. COVID-19 cases which are not resolved and have died either in hospital settings or at home, and where a Medical Certificate of Cause of Death (MCCD) in Form 4 & 4 A has been issued to the registering authority, as required under Section 10 of the Registration of Birth and Death (RBD) Act,
1969, will be treated as a COVID-19 death. Registrar General of India (RGI) will issue necessary guidelines to Chief Registrars of all States / UTs.
ii. As per the study by Indian council of Medical Research (ICMR), 95%
deaths take place within 25 days ! b£Nng tf2sted Covid positive. TO mikI3
the scope broader and more inclusive, deaths occurring within 30 days from
hf3 of testing jgr from the dat£2 Of being Clinically detefm‹