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Heather 25th Jan 2017

Posted on the Forum

Interested in hearing what other facilities do when a resident has passed away and they need to remove them from their room to holding bay. Do they cover the face of the deceased or leave it uncovered. In the facility I work it is necessary to pass other residents in main area when taking them out therefore interested in what your facility would do if this was the case,

Question 1 : covering or uncovering the deceased face is a personal way?
Question 2: Is their legislation and protocols to be followed for this?
Question 3: What are your thoughts on covering or uncovering and why?

regards Heather
Solange 26th Jan 2017
Hi Heather, I am not aware whether there are established protocols for post-mortem care. In my experience, the removal of a resident’s body following death varies from facility to facility. I guess most facilities do it quietly by removing the body in the evening or after lunch when residents are resting. In our facility we covered the body including the face and passed through the corridors and reception using this method. Many people find this method disrespectful alleging it is unnecessary to ‘protect’ residents from something so natural. Following the removal of the body staff made an altar on a small table, with flowers, a photo of the resident, and a religious memento (Bible or rosary) and placed a safe-flame candle in remembrance of the departed. Regarding your question as to why the covering of the face; I believe it is a signal of respect; to shelter the resident from prying eyes.

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