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Wrong bodies released by NHS mortuaries dozens of times

New figures has revealed serious incidents have occurred in NHS trusts where the wrong bodies of patients were released to families or lost, damaged or kept the organs or bodies of babies without family permission. According to data from the Human Tissue Authority, these incidents have reduced over the years, however, the errors still affected more than 100 families in the latest year to March 2021.

Incidents such as these are extremely distressing for the friends and family of the deceased patient, but also for the staff working in the mortuaries involved, who try their best to uphold the highest standards of patient care in often difficult circumstances. The fact that the mortuary profession is not a profession regulated by statute – as other professions such as laboratory staff and paramedics are – makes the maintenance of these quality standards more difficult than it needs to be." Said John Pitchers, chair of the Association of Anatomical Pathology Technology

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Source: The Independent, 8 August 2021


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