Mortuary & Bereavement Services including Medical Examiners' Service

When someone dies there are many decisions and arrangements to be made which can be upsetting at what is already such a sad time.

To support families during this painful stage, the hospital has carefully put together a booklet entitled ”Help for the Bereaved” which contains help and advice to overcome the immediate and long term effects of dealing with grief, as well as being an aid to the practicalities associated with the loss of a loved one.

The booklet includes information on:

  • What to do first following a death
  • Registering a death
  • People to inform following a death
  • Finance and legal issues
  • Cremations and burials
  • Grieving

A copy of the booklet will be offered to the deceased’s family by the hospital’s relatives officer following a death.

About the service at Tameside Hospital

The Mortuary Service at Tameside deals with all deaths which occur within the hospital and also covers community deaths which occur within the Tameside and Trafford regions. We also accommodate hospital and community deaths from other Trusts e.g. Stepping Hill Hospital.

The team consists of a mortuary manager, two qualified anatomical pathology technicians (APTs), one mortuary assistant and two trainee APTs.

The mortuary staff are either fully qualified anatomical pathology technicians (APT), or working towards this qualification. Their role is to admit all deceased into their care and provide assistance to a pathologist in conducting post mortems. They are then responsible for the reconstruction of the deceased after examination. This is a vital area of work as understanding the causes of death enables promotion of good health in others and in many cases, when death is unexpected, the cause of death can have legal implications. Mortuary staff also facilitate viewings and identifications of deceased and offer an out-of-hours service, should this be necessary.

Once You have spoken to the Bereavement Office and all the necessary paperwork has been completed, you will be asked to contact the Tameside Register Office by telephoning 0161 342 5028 (opening hours are: Monday to Friday - 9:30am to 4:30pm)

The Bereavement Team consists of three bereavement officers whom extend their sincere sympathies to all who have been bereaved. The aim of the Bereavement Team at Tameside & Glossop is to provide support and advice for what happens after a death in the hospital.

The Bereavement Team work alongside the medical examiners and are able to provide advice and assistance.

They provide information and support regarding visiting the deceased, if desired, whilst they are being cared for at the hospital. They will also provide advice and information about the administrative process and responsibilities regarding registering a death and making funeral arrangements.

In the absence of any next of kin, the Bereavement Team will deal with the registering of the death and take responsibility for arranging a hospital funeral with the contracted funeral director.

There are some occasions when a death has to be reported to the Coroner by law. The next of kin will be advised by the Bereavement Team if this has to happen and the Coroner’s referral process will be explained.

The role of Medical Examiner is a nationwide system which has been developed recently within all hospital trusts in England and Wales. A Medical Examiner is an independent senior consultant/doctor working at the hospital to ensure the information contained on the medical certificate of cause of death, (MCCD) is accurate and that referrals to the Coroner are performed in a timely and appropriate manner. 

The aim of the service is to: 

  • Discuss the cause of death to bereaved families and provide them with greater transparency and opportunities to raise any concerns
  • Improve the quality/accuracy of MCCD
  • Ensure referrals to coroners are appropriate
  • Provide the public with greater safeguards through improved and consistent scrutiny of all non-coronial deaths, and support healthcare providers to improve care through better learning
  • Produce statistics and monitor trends in practice. Feedback any learning needs and highlight good practice 
  • Tameside and Glossop has three medical examiners and two medical examiner officers

The Team

  • Andrew Armstrong - Mortuary & Bereavement Manager
  • Alexandria Eaves - Senior Anatomical Pathology Technician
  • Wendy Scholes - Anatomical Pathology Technician
  • George Bevan - Trainee APT
  • Hamza Amin - Trainee APT
  • Shirley Willerton - Mortuary Assistant
  • Katrina Murph - Bereavement Officer
  • James Capstick - Bereavement Officer
  • Janice Pollard - Bereavement Officers
  • Lauren Cox - Medical Examiner Officer
  • Emma Cunningham - Medical Examiner Officer
  • Dr Charles Sherrington - Medical Examiner
  • Dr Sundeep Puri - Medical Examiner