SACRAMENTO (CBS13)– Jerry Rudow has been a licensed embalmer for more than 30 years. He works with several funeral homes including the Stockton Funeral Home and says any embalming requires safety gear and treatment.
“The disinfection, you know, covering the face, the mouth,” he explained.
He doesn’t worry about the risk evening during this pandemic.
“I’ve been through the HIV aids epidemic and all the rest of them that we have had the last 34 years,” Rudow said.
Jerry Del Core is the President and CEO of Catholic Funeral and Cemetery Services for the Diocese of Sacramento.
“This was a precaution that was set up back when SARS was around, back when HIV was first around,” Del Core said.
He says even though people handling bodies are always wearing protective gear, there are two concerns.
“One is when a body is being picked up so when a decedent is being lifted there’s a chance that a puff will come out from their lungs,” he explained. “The second is when there is bodily fluid being taken out and embalming fluid being placed in that fluid is handled with the same care that it would in any infectious disease.”
Rudow says each body is handled with extra care.
“It’s just doing your job the way that we were taught how to do it,” Rudow said.
Families do have the option of cremation or a traditional burial. Del Core says embalming, however, is required if the person who died, tested positive for coronavirus.