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Winter can be an especially challenging time of year for health services. For mortuaries, higher numbers of deaths can pose problems if adequate numbers of refrigerated storage spaces are unavailable.
The removal of relevant material from the body of a deceased person and its subsequent storage for use for a scheduled purpose can only take place on premises licensed by the HTA. However, there are some exemptions.
The police have the power to seize relevant material as evidence, including material which is held under the authority of the Coroner. When the police have completed their investigations, relevant material that was seized for criminal justice purposes may come under the authority of the Coroner...
The specialist laboratory should be made aware if the family has requested that relevant material be returned to them, in order that it can be sent back to the licensed establishment for the family’s wishes to be acted upon.
Once coronial authority has ended, storage of relevant material from a deceased person for use for a scheduled purpose requires the consent of: the person concerned (if they made a decision before they died), or their nominated representative (the HT Act sets out the terms for valid appointment...
Our Code of practice on Disposal provides detailed information on the disposal of relevant material which pre-dates the HT Act (‘existing holdings’). In relation to samples which should have been disposed of, but have not been, the HTA can be contacted to provide advice.
This document is designed to provide you with information about the Human Tissue Authority (HTA) inspection process, so that you and your staff can prepare for an HTA inspection.
If the deceased person has not indicated their consent (or refusal) to post mortem removal, storage or use of their body or tissue for scheduled purposes, nor appointed a nominated representative, then the appropriate consent can be given by someone in a ‘qualifying relationship’ to the deceased...