New York, NY – Amid cries for help from overwhelmed doctors, nurses, and coroners, hospitals have begun reaching out to the public to supply them with homemade body bags. With death tolls mounting and bodies overflowing, the citizens of New York have banded together to supply the increasing demand.

As many are now aware, the Coronavirus pandemic hit the state of New York harder than any other in the nation. The crisis and lack of body bags first became apparent in late March. Hospitals in the area began filling up quickly. By April, the death toll was overwhelming, as the virus continued to spread across the densely-compacted region.

For most people, the Coronavirus caused only mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough. For some, however, especially older adults with existing health issues, it caused more severe illness. And while the vast majority did recover, New York has experienced an excess number of deaths.

Mobile Morgues in New York in need of Body Bags

However, in the true spirit of American solidarity, volunteers across the state have answered the pleas from hospital staff. Many seamsters and seamstresses have formed online sewing groups where they share a delightful array of patterns. Additionally, some have turned their homes into mini sewing factories in order to meet the increasing demand.

“For those of us who’ve been sitting at home watching the chaos unfold, sewing these body bags has made us feel a little less helpless,” said housewife Marina Fletcher. “Providing this service is our way of giving back to the community and the brave men and women on the front lines.”

Kenneth L. Davis of Mount Sinai Hospital
Kenneth L. Davis of Mount Sinai Hospital

Bracing for the Worst

In the wake of the mounting health crisis, hospitals like Mount Sinai Health Systems (in association with national craft stores like JOANN Fabrics and Michael’s) have begun posting and sharing patterns and video tutorials instructing the public how to best make the desperately-needed body bags. And while the body bags being made by the public are not yet approved for cadaver transport, many hospitals are beginning to make exceptions.

“While not ideal, do-it-yourself body bags are better than nothing,” said Kenneth L. Davis, MD. “Honestly, the virus is spreading rapidly and it’s starting to max out our hospital. All hospitals, in fact. We’ll take whatever we can get. We need the public’s support and we thank you all for your help in this trying time.”

If you’re interested in helping make body bags, New York officials have urged would-be volunteers to contact their local morgues and mortuaries for further information. Finished body bags may be dropped off near the mass graves outside Albany and Ithaca.