Bereavement services

Losing a loved one is a difficult time. Death in itself is distressing and unfortunately the administrative procedures which must be followed can be an unwelcome additional burden.

We can offer support and advice to relatives about the arrangements that need to be made after a bereavement, such as registering the death and obtaining the death certificate.

Bereavement services at Epsom Hospital

Collection of the medical certificate

Please telephone the bereavement office after 10am on the next working day following a death.

The office is open Monday: 10am - 3pm
Tuesday - Friday: 10am - 2pm.

The bereavement officer will provide you with the information as to how you proceed at this point. The officer will also be able to advise you as to when you may collect the certificate or whether the coroner will be contacting you.

Patient's property

This will be given back to you on the ward if you were present at the time of death, or may be obtained from the ward when you come to collect the certificate. Valuable items may be held in the cashier's office.

At the hospital

On arrival at the hospital, please go to Rowan House at the Woodcote Green Road entrance to the hospital. The bereavement office is located on the ground floor.

The bereavement officer will give you the medical certificate which has to be taken to the registrar of births and deaths. Please see below for details of the registrar of births and deaths.

The Coroner

Where the death was sudden, unexpected or the patient's stay in hospital has been less than 24 hours, the Coroner may have to be informed and so doctors would be unable to issue a certificate. Should the Coroner decide to investigate the cause of death, the coroner's officers will become responsible and will contact you. They will explain the reason for their involvement and the registration procedure.

However, the involvement of the coroner does not generally cause any delay with the funeral. The coroner has the legal right to order a post mortem examination without obtaining your permission. The telephone number of the coroner's office is 01483 637300

Registration

The Registrar must be notified of a death within five days. The nearest Register Office is located at: The Mansion, 70 Church Street, Leatherhead Surrey KT22 8DP.

Opening hours are:

Monday, Tuesday: 9am - 4.30pm
Wednesday: 9.30am - 4.30pm
Thusday, Friday: 9am - 4.30pm

Please telephone 0300 200 1002 for an appointment once you have collected the medical certificate.

Key contacts

Bereavement office 
Epsom Hospital, Rowan House
Tel: 01372 73 5273

Coroner's office 
Tel: 01483 637300

Register Office 
The Mansion
70 Church Street, Leatherhead
KT22 8DP
Tel: 0300 200 1002

Bereavement services at St Helier Hospital

Collection of the medical certificate

Please telephone the bereavement office after 10am on the next working day following a death. This office is open from:

Monday: 10am - 4pm
Tuesday - Friday: 10am - 2pm

The bereavement officer will provide you with the information as to how you should proceed at this point. The officer will also be able to advise you as to when you may collect the certificate or whether the coroner will be contacting you.

Patient's property

This will be given back to you on the ward if you were present at the time of death, or may be obtained from the ward when you come to collect the certificate. Valuable items may be held in the cashier's office.

At the hospital

On arrival at the hospital please go to the main reception desk and ask for the bereavement office which is located on the main ground floor corridor near the restaurant.

The bereavement officer will give you the medical certificate which has to be taken to the registrar of births and deaths in Sutton. You may be able to register at the hospital on certain days - the breavement officer will inform you if this is possible.

The Coroner

Where the death was sudden, unexpected or the patient's stay in hospital has been less than 24 hours, The Coroner may have to be informed and so doctors will be unable to issue a certificate. Should the Coroner decide to investigate the cause of death, the coroner's officers will become responsible and will contact you. They will explain the reason for their involvement and the registration procedure.

However, the involvement of the coroner does not generally cause any delay with the funeral. The coroner has the legal right to order a post mortem examination without obtaining your permission.

Registration

The registrar must be notified of a death within five days. The local Register Office is located at: Russettings, 25 Worcester Road, Sutton, SM2 6PR.

Opening hours are Monday to Friday 9am - 12.30pm and 1.30pm - 4.30pm

Please telephone 020 8770 6790 for an appointment once you have the medical certificate.

It may be possible to register the death with the registrar situated in St Helier Hospital, please check with the Bereavement Officer.

Key contacts

Bereavement office 
St Helier Hospital, ground floor, main corridor
Tel: 020 8296 2491

South London Coroner's office 
Tel: 020 8313 1883

Register Office 
Russettings
25 Worcester Road
Sutton
SM2 6PR
Tel: 020 8770 6790

Helpful information

Who can register a death?

The person required to register the death is usually:

  • A relative of the deceased (whether or not they were present at the death)
  • A person present at the death
  • The person who is going to make the funeral arrangements.

For more information, please telephone the register office.

What will I need to know?

  • When and where the death occurred
  • The forenames and surname of the deceased (and maiden surname if the deceased was a woman who had married)
  • The date and place of birth and usual address
  • The occupation (and if the deceased was a married woman or a widow, the name and occupation of her husband)
  • If the deceased was married, the date of birth of the surviving spouse is also required
  • Whether the deceased was in receipt of a pension or allowance from public funds.

The funeral

It is advisable that you are in contact with the bereavement office before you begin to make funeral arrangements. Once you have registered the death at the Register Office you will be given the burial or cremation order (green form). This should then be taken to the funeral director of your choice.

As prices vary considerably it is quite acceptable to contact more than one funeral director for a written quote for their services. The funeral director will advise and help you arrange the funeral of your choice. It may be that the deceased has given instructions, either in a Will or to someone personally as to their last wishes.

The choice of burial or cremation may also depend on cost or whether there is a family grave. The funeral director will arrange for a local priest, minister or other person of your choice to conduct the service.

Help with funeral costs

Funerals can be expensive. You may be eligible for at Funeral Expenses Payment (also called Funeral Payment) if you get certain benefits and need help to pay for a funeral you’re arranging.

The payment usually won’t cover all the costs of the funeral.

Further advice can be obtained from the Department of Works and Pension (opens in a new window).

Bereavement: Remembering loved ones

A Service of Remembrance for the friends and families of those who have sadly died at St Helier Hospital wii be held at St Helier Hospital on Wednesday 12 September 2018 at 7pm.

If you would like to attend, please call the chaplaincy on 0208 296 2306 or email us at: esth.chaplains@nhs.net.

Details of the venue at St Helier Hospital will be available nearer the time.

May we suggest that it might be more helpful to come to a service at least six months after the death of your loved one.

Useful links

You may find the following organisations helpful in offering support following your bereavement:

Cruse Bereavement Care 

08444 779400 (Helpline) 
www.crusebereavementcare.org.uk (opens in a new window)

The Lullaby Trust

020 7802 3200
Cot death helpline: 020 7233 2090 (24 hours)
Bereavement support: 0808 802 6868
www.lullabytrust.org.uk (opens in a new window)

Child Bereavement Charity 

01494 446648 (Support and information)
www.childbereavement.org.uk (opens in a new window)

Winston's Wish 

Charity for bereaved children
08452 03 04 05
www.winstonswish.org.uk (opens in a new window)

Jigsaw4u 

Grief support for children and young people
01342 313895
http://www.jigsaw4u.org.uk (opens in a new window)

The Compassionate Friends 

(for parents whose child has died) 
08451 232304 
www.tcf.org.uk (opens in a new window)

S.A.N.D.S. - still birth and neonatal death society

(for parents whose baby has died) 
020 7436 5881 (Helpline) 
www.uk-sands.org (opens in a new window)

Road Peace 

020 8964 1021
www.roadpeace.org (opens in a new window)

SSAFA Forces Help 

020 7403 8783
www.ssafa.org.uk (opens in a new window)    

The Miscarriage Association

01924 200 799 
www.miscarriageassociation.org.uk (opens in a new window)

Samaritans 

08457 909090
www.samaritans.org (opens in a new window)

Anglican Diocese of Southwark

www.southwark.anglican.org (opens in a new window)

Roman Catholic Diocese of Southwark 

www.rcsouthwark.co.uk (opens in a new window)

Anglican Diocese of Guildford

www.cofeguildford.org.u (opens in a new window)

Roman Catholic Diocese of Arundel & Brighton 

www.dabnet.org (opens in a new window)

Churches Together in Great Britain & Ireland

www.ctbi.org.uk (opens in a new window)

Please note: The inclusion of any organisation in the above list should in no way be taken as a recommendation or endorsement of that organisation by Epsom and St Helier University Hospitals NHS Trust.

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