02 July 2015
The responsibility for transporting a person, who has died suddenly or in suspicious circumstances, from their place of death is changing.
The role has traditionally been carried out by the Jersey Ambulance Service on behalf of the Viscount’s Department. In late June 2015 the role was handed over to Jersey funeral directors, who now have a rota for collecting people who have died in the community and transporting them to the Hospital mortuary.
The change is the result of joint working between the Ambulance Service, Police and local funeral directors. It will allow ambulance crews to focus on responding to emergency calls, will prevent delays in the collection of the deceased and release States of Jersey Police officers from the scene of a sudden death.
Sensitive and compassionate service
The change applies to circumstances in which someone has died suddenly, the death is suspicious, or a death certificate will not be issued at time of death due to unknown circumstances. In a typical month in Jersey there would be around seven deaths of this type.
It is hoped that the involvement of the funeral directors will guarantee a prompt, sensitive and compassionate service for families.
Assistant Minister for Health and Social Services, Connetable John Refault, said “This is a role which our frontline ambulance staff have performed with compassion and sensitivity for a number of years. It is recognised by all involved that the time has come to change this arrangement so that the Ambulance staff can concentrate on emergency call-outs to those urgently in need of assistance, and other parts of their core work, while ensuring that someone who has died is still transported by a suitable caring and compassionate service provided bylocal funeral directors.”