Marion County coroner stresses the importance of stopping the spread of COVID-19

Marion County Coroner Dr. Leeandrea Sloan is warning people to stay home as she works to keep her sons and employees safe. (Courtesy: Leeandrea Sloan)
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INDIANAPOLIS (WTHR) — The Marion County Coroner has made some serious changes because of COVID-19.

One of the major changes includes three refrigerated trailers they ordered as temporary storage room for bodies if necessary. The trailers are connected to a power generator.

Even with preparing for the worse, the coroner is trying to keep her employees and even her own family safe, as the virus continues to spread.

Dr. LeeAndrea Sloan, who is in charge at the coroner's office is stressing the importance of everyone doing what they can to stop the virus from spreading from person to person.

“... Cough into your arm, don't cough into your hands,” said Dr. Sloan. "Because then you will touch stuff, and if you’re infected it can spread the virus.”

As the Marion County coroner demonstrated best coughing practices during a Skype interview with Eyewitness News, she urged people to Stay Home to help stop COVID19.

“Yes it may feel like you're going bonkers,” she said. "Maybe you play games with your kids, you do TikTok, you dance, read a book, something, but you need to stay at home."

Sloan is also a mother to three sons who she fears could end up infected with the virus. She is doing all she can to keep them at home and even more occupied.

“We are trying to interact more," she said. "We are going old school. I have always had board games for my kids. That's where we are going, playing games and playing cards."

As an IU Health physician, Dr. Sloan conducts virtual appointments now to lower risk of exposure. She is also responsible for lowering the risk at the morgue, too, especially to the public.

“You many have to pick up belongings, you may have to identify decedents, and that's important, but we want to keep you safe and ourselves as well," she said.

Part of keeping the coroner's office safe is keeping up on the coronavirus deaths and the testing. Sloan said out of 13 tests on people who died, they've been told six tested positive, five are suspected cases, and they're still waiting for two results.

“If it is a suspected case and it has not been proven yet we are testing," she said. "If we are testing, there are measures we have to do like use a negative pressure room for the actual exam."

Sloan hopes more than anything that everyone does their part to help stop the virus in its tracks.

“You can't look at someone and tell if they have the coronavirus,” she said. “So the best thing is to really heed the advice that has been put out: stay at home."