Pandemic shortages affect Arizona funeral homes, cemeteries

Published: Wednesday, October 6, 2021 - 7:02pm
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The pandemic has led to supply struggles for almost every industry. That is no different for funeral homes and cemeteries. 

The troubles with supply chains and higher demands for burials has led to problems for those who had to plan funerals during the pandemic.

For many families, these shortages led to delays in the process of planning funerals for loved ones. 

Shortages continue ranging from embalming fluids to caskets and granite markers. Fortunately, the rate of COVID-19 deaths has slowed down, allowing relief for the supply chains. 

As the pandemic changed through the last year, Harry Antram, director of mission care for the Phoenix Diocese Catholic Cemeteries and Funeral Homes, says the area facing the most struggles changed as well. 

“Our COVID deaths have slowed, some particularly here in the state of Arizona, but what we are experiencing more than anything right now is the disruption in the transportation industry," said Antram.

Antram says transportation systems of getting the materials to the homes and cemeteries created a lag in supply. 

He added while those problems persist, they are not as bad as last year.

Funeral supplies