At Council for Mosques (CfM), we have been working with the Council, the Hospitals and the Coroner’s office to ensure that burial procedures for patients who pass away from COVID-19 are sensitive to Muslim faith burial practices. The following process has been agreed:
COVID-19 DEATH IN HOSPITAL
The doctor will issue the death certificate. The deceased will be
placed within a body bag and conveyed to the mortuary by the mortuary staff only.
COVID-19 DEATH AT HOME
The Funeral Director will contact the Coroner to determine the cause
of death. The body will be moved to the hospital mortuary so that the Coroner can carry out the test.
This could take a couple of days. The body during this time, unfortunately, will NOT be accessible to the family.
IN ALL SITUATIONS THE FUNERAL DIRECTOR WILL MAKE ALL THE NECESSARY ARRANGEMENTS.
The Funeral Director will attend with Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and collect the deceased.
The Ghusl will be carried out by trained staff (brothers for male deceased & sisters for female deceased) wearing PPE ensuring dignity and respect at all times. The deceased will be placed in a body bag and then into a coffin. The coffin will be wiped down with appropriate disinfectants for
handling. The coffin will be taken to Scholemoor Cemetery where the Janazah will be performed.
ALL JANAZAS WILL TAKE PLACE AT SCHOLEMOOR CEMETERY
THERE SHOULD BE NO MORE THAN TEN PEOPLE ATTENDING THE JANAZAH.
The congregation for the Janazah Prayer will be led by an Imam and will stand two metres apart – handshaking or hugs will not be permitted due to the possibility of transmitting the virus which could lead to more deaths.
The burial will be according to Islamic practices. CfM’s Cemetery staff will fill the grave with soil.
Please remember it is likely that immediate family members will be in isolation if the cause of death is COVID-19. If any family member was in contact with the deceased, they and their family would not be allowed to attend the Janazah prayer.
We understand these procedures will be very difficult, but we have to take them to prevent the further spread of the virus and more deaths. These procedures are in line with Government guidance. We have done our utmost to ensure that the burial is according to Islamic procedures and with the highest regard for the dignity of the deceased. This policy will take immediate effect from Thursday 26th March 2020.
THIS PROCEDURE IS SUBJECT TO CHANGE AND ADVICE FROM NATIONAL AND LOCAL GOVERNMENT AGENCIES. SO MORE THAN LIKELY WILL BE UPDATED.
Council for Mosques Executive Committee
26th March 2020