Bereavement services at Royal Derby Hospital

The Bereavement service provides a sensitive, empathetic approach to the individual needs of relatives, at a time of loss.

When you lose someone you love, it can be a devastating experience. Grief is unique and only you know how you are feeling. You may feel unsure about the practical things that you now have to do. We are here to help you through this.

Our Bereavement service provides support and information for bereaved people when a patient has died in hospital. The team will liaise with them to provide the medical certificate, co-ordinate cremation forms where appropriate, and give advice on registration. The team will also provide advice on arranging funerals where there is no next of kin.

When someone has died, a medical certificate will be issued or the death will be referred to the coroner. Our staff will advise you which will apply, and provide details on what will happen next. 

Contact the Bereavement service at the Royal Derby Hospital

Royal Derby Hospital
Uttoxeter Road
DE22 8NE

The office is open Monday to Friday between 8:30am - 4:30pm.



During busy periods your call may be diverted to an answer machine. Please leave a message with your contact details and we will return your call at the earliest opportunity. 


Out of Hours

On call manager: via switchboard

Mortuary: 01332 340 131

Registrar: 01332 340 131 

Coroner: 01332 340 131

Medical Examiner

The purpose of the medical examiner system will be to:

  • ensure greater scrutiny of all non-coronial deaths
  • ensure that appropriate direction of deaths to the coroner
  • have a better service for the bereaved and an opportunity to raise any concerns to a doctor not involved in the care of the deceased
  • improve the quality of death certification
  • improve the quality of mortality data

Telephone: 01332 786025

Issuing the medical certificate

In most cases, we will be able to issue a Medical Certificate of Cause of Death (MCCD), indicating the cause of death. You will be advised whether we are able to issue an MCCD or not, or if a coroners referral is required. Once an MCCD has been issued by the hospital, you will not need to collect from the hospital. Since Covid-19 regulations came in, hospitals send MCCDs to registrars electronically. This is continuing even now Covid-19 regulations have ended. Once the MCCD has been shared with the registrar, a registration of death can take place.

Please be aware, that the paperwork required may take over 24 hours to be processed, and you may be asked to call back at a later time. However please be assured we will do everything we can to get this completed as quickly as possible for you.

Referrals to the coroner

When we are unable to provide a medical certificate, the death will be referred to the coroner and you will be advised when to contact the coroner’s office.

How a death is registered

When the hospital has issued a medical certificate the death should be registered within five days. An appointment can be made with the Derby Register Service - 01332 641680.

To book a registration appointment at the Royal Derby Hospital:


01332  785 557

01332 788 328

01332 787 097

Early release of the deceased

The Trust recognises that there will be occasions when following the death of an inpatient, an early release of the deceased body may be required.  

Early release is a process whereby the MCCD is issued very shortly after a death has occurred so that the funeral can take place quickly, normally within 24 hours, and it is usually a request for a burial.  (Under the normal process a MCCD is issued and the registration should take place within 5 days of the death, following which, funeral arrangements are made).

Please follow this checklist to support an early release request:


An early release could be requested based on any of the following factors or combination of factors

  • Religious or cultural beliefs of the patient
  • A request by the nominated representative (this would need to be either the Executor of the will/Grant of Probate or Personal Representative, if there is no will) of the deceased patient in order for an early burial to take place
  • A request by an official authority (ie police, coroner)
  • Repatriation of the deceased

The University Hospitals of Birmingham NHS Trust have produced a short video to highlight different cultural beliefs around deceased patients and releasing their bodies early (opens in new window) >


What Happens Out of Hours

The Bereavement Office will be open and available for advice and guidance between 8:30am - 4:30pm, Monday to Friday. Outside of these hours, the senior nurse in charge on the ward will be able to advise on next steps. There is also advice available from the on-call manager can be contacted via the hospital switchboard on 01283 511 511.

For more information please access our FAQs sheet:

Information and support

At UHDB, our Chaplaincy team > offer support for all patients, families and staff during their time in hospital. The leaflet below is available to relatives and provides useful and helpful information, at what is often a difficult and distressing time.

The Macmillan Cancer Information Centre > provides information in a supportive environment for anyone seeking advice in relation to cancer or palliative care issues.

We have a specialist bereavement midwife who is able to provide support and advice to parents and families following the death of a baby during pregnancy. 

The bereavement midwife can be contacted via the Royal Derby Hospital Switchboard on 01332 340 131.

Independent counselling and support services

Counselling and support services are available independently. Local organisations include:

Cruse Bereavement Care

Telephone: 01332 332 098 

Visit the Cruse Bereavement Care website (opens in new window) >

Compassionate Friends

Telephone: 01283 073 2161

Visit the Compassionate Friends website (opens in new window) >

The Laura Centre (for children and when a child dies)

Telephone: 01332 408 026

Visit the Laura Centre website (opens in new window) >

Specialist bereavement midwives

Sadly, not every pregnancy has a happy outcome and some end in the loss of a much wanted baby. The role of the bereavement midwife is to provide immediate, long term sensitive care and support for families following a late pregnancy loss, stillbirth and neonatal death.

Although the role of the bereavement midwife is hospital-based, they can see families at home giving help and guidance with the necessary practical requirements such as registering the death, funeral arrangements, supporting the family’s emotional needs and helping to create positive memories of their baby.

They are also on hand to provide advice, plans of care, and ongoing support for women in subsequent pregnancies where required.

Contact us

Angela Thompson
Specialist Bereavement Midwife
Telephone: 01332 789 791


We value your opinion.

Please accept our sympathies for your loss.

It is important to us that we provide the best possible care and support, not only for patients but also those whom they share their lives. We sincerely hope that we have been able to provide you and your loved one with the support and comfort you have needed at this time.

Our thoughts are with you at this time.

Feedback can help us understand what we are doing well and what we can improve upon for others who may be going through a similar experience.

We may ask you for an email address to send information to you and to also send you a link to our survey. Alternatively, you can complete our survey below.

Complete the bereavement feedback survey (opens in a new window) >