An advertising company in Colombia is promoting a novel but somewhat gloomy solution to cope with the shortage of hospital beds and coffins during the coronavirus pandemic: a product that does both.
ABC Displays has created a cardboard bed with a metal railing that, according to the designers, can serve as a coffin for the patient if he dies.
Company manager Rodolfo Gómez said he was inspired to find a way to help after seeing recent events in neighboring Ecuador.
Families in the Ecuadorian coastal city of Guayaquil waited for days with the bodies of their loved ones at home last month as cases of the COVID-19 disease skyrocketed. Many were unable to find an available casket or pay for it, so instead they used donated cardboard coffins.
“Low-income families have no way to pay for a coffin,” said Gómez.
He indicated that he plans to donate 10 of his new beds to the department of Amazonas, where there is a shortage of resources. To date there are no indications of whether the beds will be used, nor have there been any requests.
The Bogotá-based company is primarily engaged in advertising, but in the last month it suspended most of its activities due to quarantine in the country.
The beds can withstand a weight of 150 kilograms (330 pounds) and will cost approximately $ 85 each, Gomez reported. He said he worked with a private clinic to design them, and hopes they will be used in emergency clinics where there is a shortage of beds.
At least one doctor was skeptical about the resistance the cardboard bed may have. He also warned that a body should first be placed in a sealed bag before placing it in a cardboard coffin to prevent the possible spread of the disease.
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