Please accept our sincere condolences if you are visiting this web page following the death of a relative or friend.
Our Bereavement Centre at Walsall Manor NHS Trust offers an individualised, culturally sensitive service. We provide comprehensive information, guidance and support for bereaved relatives and friends following the death of a loved one.
When someone dies, there are a number of practical things that need to be done. The aim of the following information is to give you direction and advice at a time when you may be feeling overwhelmed.
What do I need to do next?
It is important that following the death of a relative or friend you contact the bereavement office so we can provide you with practical support and guide you through the next steps. Please call 01922 604637 between the hours of 10am to 4pm Monday to Friday.
The doctor will need to complete a Medical Certificate of Cause of Death following discussion with an Independent doctor called a Medical Examiner. This can take a few days to complete and is then sent electronically to Walsall Register Office. Once you have received confirmation from the hospital that the Medical Certificate of Cause of Death has been emailed to the Register Office you will need to make an appointment to attend Walsall Register Office to register the death in person. Please arrange your appointment via https://go.walsall.gov.uk Births, Marriages and deaths If you are unable to access the internet you can call the Customer Services Team on 0300 555 2848 between 9am to 5pm Monday to Thursday and 9am to 4.30pm Fridays and they can book the appointment on your behalf
You can pay for certificates (£11.00 EACH) at the appointment using a debit or credit card.
At the registration appointment they will collect some information from you regarding yourself and the person who has died – guidance regarding this information can be found on the website and will be in the confirmation email you receive once the registration appointment has been made.
At the end of the appointment, they will issue any death certificates that you require and will also ask you for the name of the funeral director you intend to instruct so that they can email the green form to them directly.
The Registry Office will also be able to issue you with a reference number to enable you to use the Government’s Tell-Us-Once service to inform other Government Departments regarding the death.
We are determined to provide the best possible service to patients and other visitors to the Trust and welcome all comments on our service, whether good or bad, so that we can act on these comments to continue to improve the service we provide.
If you have any comments on the service you have experienced, please contact the Bereavement Office – Bereavement.firstname.lastname@example.org Telephone 01922 604637 or the person in charge of the ward/department where your relative died. Alternatively the Patient Advice and Liaison team (PALS) at the hospital can provide assistance if you have cause for concern, compliments or suggestions regarding the care of your loved one or your family. To contact PALS: email@example.com Telephone 01922 656463
Monday to Fri 0900 am – 0430 pm excluding weekends and bank holidays
Walsall Healthcare NHS Trust
Tim Mortimer, Bereavement Officer
Family liaison team
Mon-Fri 9.00-4.30 or weekends Sat/Sun 07790981819
In order to make an appointment with the Bereavement Officer, please telephone the General Office on 01922 656837 after 10am the next working day following your bereavement.
Sometimes there are unavoidable delays in the issuing of the Medical Certificate of Cause of Death (MCCD) as detailed below. In these circumstances the person’s body cannot be released immediately, and a delay is unavoidable. The main causes of such delays are:
- When a death occurs ‘out of hours’ the issuing of the MCCD may be delayed, possible examples could be: · From Friday afternoon to Monday morning · On a public holiday We will endeavour at all times to assist in the fulfilling of any particular religious requirements you may have in relation to funeral practices. If you need to proceed quickly the bereavement staff will advise you regarding this. During out of hours you will need to speak to the Ward Sister where your relative died.
- Where there are legal reasons for a delay; some of these reasons are explained in the section headed ‘Referrals to the coroner’.
- When the funeral is to take place outside of England or Wales an ‘Out of England’ order will need to be issued to you by the coroner before proceeding. A ‘Free from Infection’ certificate must be issued by the hospital prior to transportation. Your funeral director can arrange this. The body of the deceased person cannot be released from the hospital until you have been given the green or yellow certificate or the coroner’s white certificate. Please give this certificate to the funeral director.
Referral to the coroner A death may have to be reported to the coroner for legal reasons and the hospital staff will advise you if this has to happen. This is usually when a doctor is unable to issue a Medical Certificate of Cause of Death (MCCD). The coroner is appointed to investigate certain types of death. A death will be referred to the coroner if: · no precise cause of death can be established · death follows an operation, or if it is possible that it could be due to a complication of surgery or anaesthesia · death is not thought to be from natural causes · death is due to an injury or a fall, however it happened · death takes place within 24 hours of admission to hospital There are other cases where a death must be referred to the coroner, for example, death from industrial diseases, poisoning, suicide and murder. The coroner’s office will be able to help you and give you any advice. If a post-mortem is required, a delay may be experienced before the registration of death and funeral take place. If the death has to be reported to the coroner you can still contact the funeral director of your choice to start making the arrangements for the funeral, but you should tell the funeral director that the death has been reported to the coroner to keep any delay in the funeral arrangements to a minimum. You will need to wait to hear from the coroner’s officer before registering the death. If there is to be a post mortem, the coroner’s officer will explain the procedure to you and advise you when it is appropriate to register the death. The coroner’s officer can be contacted on 0121 569 7200.
The Medical Examiner role The Medical Examiner is a senior doctor working in the Trust to ensure that all adult inpatient deaths are reviewed by someone who is independent and who was not involved in the patient’s care. The Medical Examiner will ensure that the information contained on the Medical Certificate of Cause of Death (MCCD), is correct and that referrals to the coroner are made, (if necessary), in a timely and appropriate manner to avoid delays. A key role of the Medical Examiner is to make it easier for the bereaved to understand the wording on the Medical Certificate which explains the cause of death. You will have an opportunity to ask further questions if you wish to do so. You will also be asked if you have any concerns regarding the care provided prior to the patient’s death. Although he or she may not be able to answer your questions immediately, the Medical Examiner will assist in seeking answers, as appropriate and advise you about sources of additional support available