76-year old COVID patient thought to have died wakes up moments before being cremated

A 76-year-old Indian woman was nearly cremated alive after collapsing from COVID-19 symptoms leading her family to wrongfully believe she had passed away.

An elderly woman by the name of Shakuntala Gaikwad was nearly burned alive after she woke up just moments before what would have been her cremation, as family thought she had died due to COVID-19.

Regained consciousness just in time

After having tested positive for the coronavirus just last week, the 76-year-old woman was brought to the Silver Jubilee Hospital in Baramati by her family, but was ultimately turned away as wards were full.

As Gaikwad and her family waited for an ambulance to take her elsewhere, the woman collapsed to the floor leaving her family to believe that she had passed away. The family decided to prepare her cremation and the elderly woman was even put on a funeral bier before opening her eyes just moments before being thrown into the blazing flames.

COVID-19 in India

In recent months, India has seen an unprecedented surge of coronavirus cases that experts are saying has been one of the worst ever recorded since the pandemic began in March 2020. India's health ministry on Monday reported 281,386 coronavirus cases, dropping down the 300,000 mark for the first time in almost four weeks.

But though cases have begun to decrease, the number of deaths per day are still dangerously high—the highest in the world at the moment. Daily deaths yesterday, 17 May, were of 4,340 but experts claim that the total count could not be officially verified due to a lack of testing in rural areas, where the virus is spreading rapidly.

Scientists are now predicting that India's total caseload since the beginning of the pandemic will most likely surpass the 30 million mark within the coming weeks. As it stands currently, India has recorded 278,751 deaths.

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