Canterbury DHB


Inpatient Deaths

These are outlined in the Resident Medical Officer's Handbook. This describes the process for:

In This Section

Medical Responsibility

Nursing Staff Responsibility

Medical Responsibility

When a patient dies, the nursing staff will contact the medical staff to arrange a physical examination to confirm the death. This examination should take place within two hours of being notified and must be recorded in the clinical notes.

It is very important to ensure that the family is aware of the death. The General Practitioner must be phoned on the next working day. Before the Notification of Death to the Coroner form is completed, the Haematologist must be notified of the death. The medical staff will be contacted by the Mortality Co-ordinator to complete the documentation for patients who die. During weekends the Duty Manager will contact the medical staff. In the case of deaths that occur overnight, the documentation is generally performed the following morning.

Note: The medical responsibilities are outlined in the Resident Medical Officer's Handbook. This guides the notification of death to the Coroner, the issuing of death certificates and cremation forms, the requisition for post mortem examinations, and the notification of deaths at Christchurch Hospital.

Nursing Staff Responsibility

Refer to the Nursing Procedures Manual, Volume F, Section 3, When a Patient Dies. Paper copies are available on each ward. This manual is currently under review, however.

In the event of death of an inpatient in Haematology, it is the responsibility of the appropriate registered nurse to:

About this Canterbury DHB document (4658):

Document Owner:

Not assigned (see Who's Who)

Last Reviewed:

November 2019

Next Review:

November 2022


Note: Only the electronic version is controlled. Once printed, this is no longer a controlled document. Disclaimer

Topic Code: 4658