Man declared dead, put into body bag but found to be alive
An elderly resident was mistakenly declared dead and taken to a morgue in a body bag, in the latest sign of dysfunction in Covid-stricken Shanghai where millions of people remain under government-enforced lockdown.
Video footage, shot by a bystander, shows the moment several workers dressed head-to-toe in protective gear recoil as they realise the man is still alive. The footage has since gone viral on Chinese social media, sparking horror and outrage.
The video, posted on Sunday, shows the head of the man -- a nursing home resident -- appearing from the yellow body bag as the workers lift it from a vehicle.
The person filming the video, apparently from a nearby building, can be heard saying, "The nursing home is such a mess. They sent a living person on a hearse and said they were dead. The undertaker staff said they were still moving ... It is irresponsible, really irresponsible."
The video shows the moment morgue workers realise the man is still alive.
上海新长征福利院把还活着的老人装进尸袋，要送去殡仪馆火化，被运尸体的殡仪馆工作人员发现：“活的！”看来这是嫌上海老人死得还不够多，烧死活人不算死于新冠就行。 pic.twitter.com/O6Zn5qV76L— 方舟子 (@fangshimin) May 1, 2022
On China's Twitter-like platform Weibo, many expressed disbelief such a grave mistake could have happened -- especially in Shanghai, which has long been seen as China's most progressive and modern city.
"The problems in Shanghai are fully exposed this time," said a Weibo user.
Another wrote: "This counts as intentional homicide."
Many others pointed out the man could have been buried or cremated had he not been discovered alive.
The district government responded to the incident on Monday, saying in a statement the elderly man was now in a stable condition.
Three officials have been removed from the district's civil affairs bureau and social development office, and the head of the nursing home has also been removed, it said.
Authorities have also revoked the certification of a doctor who was involved, and who is now under investigation, state-run Global Times reported.