Winter is often a very difficult time for the country’s health service. With the weather getting colder and immune systems weakening during this time, hospital admissions generally rise and unfortunately so do the number of deaths. The Office for National Statistics noted that during the 2016 to 2017 Winter period, there were an estimated 34,300 excess Winter deaths in England and Wales. With these circumstances looming, how is the nation’s funeral care industry going to cope with a surge in demand for their services?
Mortuary Chillers: A Recap
A mortuary chiller is a temperature-controlled storage facility for a deceased body, used while they await identification, removal for autopsy or burial/cremation. In order to delay the time before the corpses go into decomposition, they need to be kept in a constant refrigerated environment, or even then moved to frozen storage, to slow down the rate of decay further.
What Are The UK’s Current Funeral Care Standards?
Unlike the very familiar Food Standards Agency that regulates the country’s food & drink industry, from the likes of cafes and restaurants, we often see or hear very little about the standards set for the UK’s funeral care industry. This is mainly due to the fact that there isn’t actually a regulating body to set them.
What’s The Solution?
When you combine the unfavourable effects of Winter with the unregulated funeral care industry, it doesn’t make for pleasant reading. The immediate challenge is to ensure that such facilities have the correct capacity and storage arrangements in place to cope with an increase in demand during the Winter.
As an ongoing task, temperature-controlled body storage should be constructed using the best quality materials and ancillaries, until approved industry regulations and standards are introduced. Tackling both of these challenges head-on will ensure mortuary operators are at the top of their game.
- Hygienic Panels
Constructing a body storage facility using composite panels with a hygienic coating, such as Kingspan Quadcore, ensures a sanitised and maintenance-free environment. Offering an efficient installation time, these facilities can be straightforwardly expanded at any time; this should be considered by mortuary operators as part of their contingency plans for peak times.
- Storage Equipment
Ensuring each mortuary facility operates using high-quality equipment is important in optimising the space available. Deciding between side-loading or front-loading storage cabinets or whether a single or multi-door layout is best suited to the space, can make a difference to the overall capacity of the facility.
Stancold have a wealth of experience in supplying and installing temperature-controlled facilities for mortuaries and funeral care services across the country. Able to carry out thorough site surveys and provide detailed drawings, the team will install a bespoke cost-effective solution to maintain suitable sanitation levels for the storage of bodies.
For more information on our mortuary and chilled body storage, get in touch with us on 0117 316 7000 or send an enquiry.
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