In the name of Allāh, Most Gracious, Most Merciful

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Death occurs in hospital / hospice

This information is primarily for those living in the U.K. (in particular England & Wales) 

 

2. DEATH OCCURS IN HOSPITAL 

2a. Death occurs in hospital and cause of death is known 

2b. Death occurs in hospital and cause of death is not known/ medical certificate not issued 

 

2a. Death occurs in hospital and cause of death is known 

  1. Appoint one family member who will liaise and communicate with the ward, doctors, patient services, funeral director, register office and coroner office. 
  1. If the patient has a terminal disease ask the attending doctor in charge (consultant) in advance as to who will issue the medical certificate of cause of death (MCCD). However, if the death occurs during transport to hospital in A&E, within 24 hours of admission, after an operation or accident it will need to be reported to the coroner. In some circumstances the attending doctor may wish to discuss the case with the coroner before issuing a medical certificate (MCCD). 
  1. After death takes place ask the ward sister to get the doctor to issue a medical certificate (MCCD). If you already have name of doctor who is going to issue the medical certificate (MCCD) this will help.  
  1. After collecting the medical certificate of cause of death (MCCD) from the ward or patient services, inform your local Muslim funeral director (or local imām), tell them that you have the medical certificate (MCCD). The funeral director will advise you what needs to be done next. 
  1. The death needs to be registered within 5 days either with the registrar based at the hospital where the person died or with the register office in the area where the death occurred to avoid delays. A relative of the deceased, someone present at death or anybody making arrangements with the funeral directors can register the death. It takes about 30 minutes to register a death.  
  1. Make an appointment with the register office to register the death. When you go to the register office, if available, take evidence of address of the deceased (utility bill, council tax bill). You will need to tell the registrar the deceased person’s full name, time of death, any previous name, last address, occupation, details of any surviving spouse, and if the deceased claimed any state pension or other benefits. The registrar will issue two free certificates: 
  • Certificate for burial/ disposal (the green form) this certificate should be given to the funeral director as permission for burial. 
  • Certificate of Registration of Death (BD8), also called the death certificate – is completed and used for social security purposes and for probate etc.  

During public holidays or after office hours the certificate of burial/ disposal can be obtained from the Registrar of deaths from his home. His/her telephone number can be obtained from your funeral director. This service is only available in the event of an emergency i.e. if burial needs to take place and offices are closed.  

  1. Contact your local Muslim funeral director informing them you have certificate for burial (the green form) and contact the local masjid/ imām where you intend to perform ghusl and janāza prayer. The funeral director will ask you in which masjid and at what time you plan to perform janāza prayer. 
  1. The funeral director will collect the body from the hospital mortuary, transfer the body to the local masjid for ghusl and janāza prayer, and make arrangements for burial. He will advise you of suitable/ available times for burial, coffin if you require one and the costs involved in the burial process. Paperwork has to be completed and payment made prior to the actual burial process. 
  1. Different cemeteries/ grave yards have different latest burial times and some do not allow the coffin to be opened at the grave yard. In such cases it is necessary to ensure the head of the body is facing the Qibla before entering the cemetery. 

 

2b. Death occurs in hospital and cause of death is not known/ medical certificate not issued 

  1. Appoint one family member who will liaise and communicate with the ward, doctors, patient services, funeral director, register office and coroner office. 
  1. Under certain circumstance the hospital doctor will not be able to issue a medical certificate of cause of death (MCCD). If the death occurs during transport to hospital in A&E, within 24 hours of admission, after an operation or accident it will need to be reported to the coroner.  
  1. In some circumstances the attending doctor may wish to discuss the case with the coroner before issuing a medical certificate (MCCD). If this is the case, the coroner2 will issue ‘A’ certificate (form 100A, also called ‘Part A’), indicating he is aware of the death, no further investigation is necessary and that permission has been given to the doctor to issue a medical certificate (MCCD). The coroner may send the ‘A’ certificate directly to the Registrar for deaths or you may need to collect it from the coroner’s office to take to the Registrar yourself. 
  1. If the hospital doctor is unable to issue a medical certificate (MCCD) the coroner will arrange for a formal invasive autopsy (post-mortem examination) or a digital autopsy (MRI/ CT scan) or open an inquest. See section 7 Digital autopsy v Invasive autopsy (post-mortem). You can request the coroner to perform a digital autopsy (MRI/ CT scan, also called digital post-mortem) depending on what is available in your area instead of a traditional invasive post-mortem. A digital autopsy will be performed if considered appropriate.
  1. After the autopsy has been performed the coroner’s office may issue pink form B (form 100, also called part ‘B’), this is a substitute for the medical certificate of cause of death (MCCD). The pink form B is signed by the pathologist working for the coroner’s office. The coroner may send the pink form B directly to the Registrar for deaths or you may need to collect it from the coroner’s office to take to the Registrar yourself. The pink form B allows you to register the death.  
  1. The coroner may open an inquest to investigate the death but give permission for burial to take place by issuing order for burial (form 101). The order of burial does not require registration. 
  1. Make an appointment with the register office to register the death. When you go to the register office, if available, take evidence of address of the deceased (utility bill, council tax bill). You will need to tell the registrar the deceased person’s full name, time of death, any previous name, last address, occupation, details of any surviving spouse, and if the deceased claimed any state pension or other benefits. The registrar will issue two free certificates: 
  • Certificate for burial/ disposal (the green form) this certificate should be given to the funeral director as permission for burial. 
  • Certificate of Registration of Death (BD8), also called the death certificate – is completed and used for social security purposes and for probate etc. 

During public holidays or after office hours the certificate of burial/ disposal can be obtained from the Registrar of deaths from his home. His/her telephone number can be obtained from your funeral director. This service is only available in the event of an emergency i.e. if burial needs to take place and offices are closed.  

  1. Contact your local Muslim funeral director informing them you have Certificate for burial (the green form) and contact the local masjid/ imām where you intend to perform ghusl and janāza prayer. The funeral director will ask you in which masjid and at what time you plan to perform janāza prayer. 
  1. The funeral director will collect the body from the hospital mortuary, transfer the body to the local masjid for ghusl and janāza prayer, and make arrangements for burial. He will advise you of suitable/ available times for burial, coffin if you require one and the costs involved in the burial process. Paperwork has to be completed and payment made prior to the actual burial process. 
  1. Different cemeteries/ grave yards have different latest burial times and some do not allow the coffin to be opened at the grave yard. In such cases it is necessary to ensure the head of the body is facing the Qibla before entering the cemetery.