The Coronavirus Act 2020, which introduced easements to death certification processes and cremation forms, expires at midnight on 24 March 2022. Some changes have been retained on a permanent basis through other measures, and other processes revert to previous practice.
The following provisions are continuing after 24 March 2022:
- The period before death within which a doctor completing a Medical Certificate of Cause of Death (MCCD) must have seen a deceased patient will remain 28 days (prior to the coronavirus pandemic, the limit was 14 days).
- It will still be acceptable for medical practitioners to send MCCDs to registrars electronically.
- The government’s intention is that the form Cremation 5 will not be re-introduced after the Coronavirus Act expires.
The following emergency provisions are changing with the expiry of the Act:
- The provision temporarily allowing any medical practitioner to complete the MCCD, introduced as a temporary measure by the Coronavirus Act, will be discontinued.
- Informants will have to register deaths in person, not remotely.