Funeral homes are in the ‘red zone’ with Covid, says industry representative

With 322,000 deaths by Covid in the country in one year, the funeral sector is operating at the limit of capacity.

The statement is from Lourival Panhozzi, president of the Brazilian Association of Companies and Directors of the Funerary Sector (Abredif).

Read: One year after ‘gripezinha’, Brazil has 298 thousand deaths

“The industry can take the pressure hard, but it needs to stop, because nobody can take it all the time. We are in the red zone, ”he said.

Panhozzi said there was still no shortage of coffins, and ruled out a major collapse.

According to the association’s president, before the pandemic, manufacturers of funeral urns produced between 110,000 and 120,000 caskets per month.

With Covid, the contingent jumped up to 150 thousand per month.

“The prediction is almost impossible to make, the virus is very evil, it does not have much pattern. It is quicksand. The number of deaths only increases,” he said.

Read: Ernesto Araújo did not want Brazil to sign Covax Facility; ambassador intervened

Despite the jump in deaths – March was the month with the most deaths, with 66,800 fatalities -, the funeral sector saw its revenue drop.

“The price of gloves increased by 1,000%, that of masks, by 600%. There are no more room rentals or crown sales. We had to ask the factories for a single simple pattern of urn to increase capacity. In a moment, the coffins almost ran out of varnish, “he said, adding that he did not pass the price on to the public.

With a choked voice, Panhozzi said that he has already lost several close people to Covid.

He asked for care and seriousness with the disease:

“Believe me, it is serious. The virus kills without mercy, burials are without goodbye. I have lost many friends, brothers of the heart. Let no one want to go through this pain.”

Read: Funeral sector complains about lack of government aid

(By Eduardo Barretto)

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Guilherme Amado went through O Globo, Veja and Extra. He received the Esso and Tim Lopes Investigative Journalism awards. He is a JSK Fellow at Stanford University, and a member of the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists. It is located between Brasília, São Paulo, Rio and where else there is a good story to tell.
Acting for the column, Eduardo Barretto worked for the newspaper O Globo and for the websites Crusoé and Poder360. He also collaborated for the Associated Press and O Estado de S. Paulo. He studied at the University of Brasília and at the London School of Journalism. It is based in the Federal Capital, where it seeks stories about power.
Naomi Matsui visited the magazine Veja and the website Poder 360. She also collaborated with O Estado de S. Paulo and UOL. She covered National Congress, Planalto Palace, and the 2018 presidential elections. Graduated in journalism from Mackenzie, lives in Brasília, where she covers the different areas of power.
Guilherme Amado went through O Globo, Veja and Extra. He received the Esso and Tim Lopes Investigative Journalism awards. He is a JSK Fellow at Stanford University, and a member of the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists. It is located between Brasília, São Paulo, Rio and where else there is a good story to tell.
Acting for the column, Eduardo Barretto worked for the newspaper O Globo and for the websites Crusoé and Poder360. He also collaborated for the Associated Press and O Estado de S. Paulo. He studied at the University of Brasília and at the London School of Journalism. It is based in the Federal Capital, where it seeks stories about power.
Naomi Matsui visited the magazine Veja and the website Poder 360. She also collaborated with O Estado de S. Paulo and UOL. She covered National Congress, Planalto Palace, and the 2018 presidential elections. Graduated in journalism from Mackenzie, lives in Brasília, where she covers the different areas of power.

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