Notice to GPs: Important legislative change pertaining to doctors issuing certificates for burial and cremation
Please be advised that the South Australian Burial and Cremation Act 2013 and the Burial and Cremation Regulations 2014 (The Act) comes into operation on 1 February 2014.
GPs are asked to note the following:
- it is an offence (the maximum penalty for which is imprisonment for 4 years) for a doctor to give a certificate of cause of death knowing that he or she has a pecuniary or other interest in the estate of the deceased (see section 14(2) of The Act)
- in the case of death by natural causes where the deceased is to be buried, there is a new partial certificate of cause of death that will need to be completed by the doctor. This partial certificate must be sighted by a cemetery authority before burial can occur (see section 12 of The Act)
- there are new provisions dealing with identification of remains prior to removal from the place of death. Funeral directors are unable to move the bodily remains within the place of death or move the bodily remains from the place of death unless a permanent identification tag is attached. If the tag is attached by the medical practitioner responsible for the deceased’s medical care immediately before death or another person who personally knew the deceased, then that person must also complete a certificate of identification
- the type of identification tag to be used is defined by the registrar as 'an identification tag of adequate size and material to enable required information to be included in indelible ink and to ensure the identification tag cannot be easily removed from the body'. It must include the full name of the deceased person and the place of death, written in indelible ink and securely attached.
Download the information sheet notes for doctors, which explains the forms required for burial and cremation, including when they should be used and who they should be completed by. Further information is available on the Consumer and Business Services SA website.
If you require copies of the new forms, please email email@example.com.
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NORTH ADELAIDE SA 5006