NHS Guidance for Staff Responsible for Care after Death

The 2011 guidance for staff responsible for care after death was developed by the National End of Life Care Programme and National Nurse Consultant Group (Palliative Care), this guidance:

  • sets out key principles
  • is intended as a guide for training, as well as for informing the development of organisational protocols for this area of care
  • aims to provide a consistent view that accommodates England’s diverse religious and multi-cultural beliefs.
CuddleBlanket cooling blanket for bariatric bodies on hospital bed

The document is intended as a guide for all those dealing with the deceased including hospices. The guidance states that there is a requirement to cool the deceased as soon as possible and that the refrigeration of bodies should be carried out within two to four hours to preserve the appearance, condition and dignity of the deceased. Additional work relating to the care of the child after death (Children’s Hospices UK 2011) also supports this national guidance.

The document also highlights that although many hospices have cold rooms, which should be below 12°C (ideally 4-6°C), the concern is that these low temperatures may not be tolerable for relatives who wish to be in the room for extended periods. Therefore, the guidance highlights Flexmort’s new innovation in this area and refers to our CuddleBlanket cooling blanket (also known as Covercool) as offering effective alternatives.

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