Human Tissue Authority

The regulator for human tissue and organs

HTA licensing of emergency mortuary facilities

The HTA can provide an HTA licence for an emergency mortuary in the event of an incident.

The HTA has developed a system for doing this, working with the Home Office and other relevant bodies.

Emergency planning teams should refer to the HTA guidance for further information about HTA licensing of emergency mortuary facilities and how to apply for an HTA licence: 

 

In advance of an incident – emergency planning and preparation

As part of emergency planning, organisations should consider whether an HTA licence for an emergency mortuary facility might be required.

If an emergency mortuary facility licence may be required in the event of an incident, organisations should complete as much as possible of the licence application form as part of their emergency planning and preparation. The information on the licence application form should be reviewed regularly and when major changes to emergency plans are made.

 

The licence application should not be submitted to the HTA until such time as a licence is required (that is, in the event of an incident occurring).

Following an incident – applying for an HTA licence for an emergency mortuary facility

Premises, where licensable activities take place, need to be licensed by the HTA. The relevant licences must be in place before licensable activity can commence.

Temporary facilities can be erected and body recovery and storage initiated immediately following an incident. However, it is unlawful to carry out licensable activities (for example, post-mortem examinations) until the relevant HTA licence is granted.

The HTA should be notified if a licence is required for an emergency mortuary facility. The guidance document provides detailed information on how to apply for an HTA licence for an emergency mortuary facility.

Details of current licensing fees are provided on the licensing fees page.

Please contact the HTA for advice if you are uncertain about whether your planned emergency mortuary arrangements would require premises to be licensed.

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Last updated on: 11 Sep 2019