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Managing the Deceased

To protect public health, there are rules around how the bodies of deceased persons are to be handled, transported, and disposed. These rules must be followed by both the general public and the funeral industry.

To contact an Environmental Health Officer please call 1300 066 055.

More information regarding managing of the deceased can be found on the NSW Government website.

How will this information assist you?

  • Access NSW Health Policy Directives including those which provide exemptions for community and religious reasons, and instances where shallow burials are required
  • Access Guidelines including those which cover burials on private land, retention of bodies for longer than permitted under legislation, cremation of more than one body simultaneously, and procedures for transporting a body overseas
  • Access to factsheets including the keeping or spreading of cremation ashes, the handling of bodies during an Influenza pandemic, and a flowchart for NSW cremation and the use of interstate forms
  • Access medical referee information and cremation forms
  • Access information regarding the exhumation (removing from ground for cremation or burial at a new grave site) of bodies and relevant application forms
  • Access an anatomy audit tool and mortuary audit tool which can be used to ensure your funeral industry premises is preparing and handling bodies in the correct manner to protect public health
  • Access information regarding destitute burials or destitute cremations where a deceased person or their family has no financial means to cover the cost of managing of a deceased person
  • Notification forms and information regarding registers which must be kept by cemeteries, crematoria and mortuaries
  • Understand management of the deceased legislation (Public Health Act 2010 and Public Health Regulation 2012). This legislation for example controls premises and facilities for handling bodies, handling of bodies including embalming, viewing, the use of body bags and storage of bodies, exhumations, and records required to be kept
Last updated: 13 July 2018