The Madison County coroner shared with us steps his office is trying to prevent exposure to coronavirus during the pandemic.
Dr. Tyler Berryhill said he's only had to transport about 7 bodies that were COVID positive and evaluate them. He said that's because of the 131 confirmed deaths in Madison County, the majority of those people died in the hospital.
But they take extra precautions when responding to the death of someone who might be COVID positive.
Berryhill said he's followed the coronavirus vaccine news closely and State Health Officer Scott Harris's announcement that mortuary workers could qualify to receive the vaccine in the first round of distortion that could start as early as next month.
"I'm definitely an advocate for the vaccine to get back to normal to society in our life. Me personally, with my age and my apparent good health, I would be okay with stepping back and allowing someone else to have my vaccine that it may actually give them a better chance if they were to contract the virus," he said.
He explained although he wants the vaccine. Berryhill said he will most likely will wait to get it.
"Typically for me in my unique situation, I have no problem with giving the vaccination, if it was offered to me to somebody else. One of the nurses at one of the hospitals, emergency room or the doctor's that working on the front lines to help somebody I have no trouble with waiting until there is more available for the population," he said.
Berryhill added they use personal protective equipment when responding to death calls and get an idea of the situation to know what PPE is necessary and work to conserve their supply.
"The N-95 the gloves, any eye wear protection that's the essential. The reality is there may not be enough PPE to use on every single case to gown up head to toe so we have to use a case-by-case basis, but take good universal precautions to be safe and preventative measures," he said.
Berryhill said he's responded to a few cases where people tested positive for the virus and were sent home to self quarantine where they got sicker and eventually died. He explained if you believe you need hospital care and have the virus, you should get help immediately.