Communication around the time of a death

A range of resources are available on this website to support health and social care staff regarding communication around the time of a death and in their interactions with those who are bereaved.

These include a suite of short animations such as the one below, and others which cover e.g.

Caring for people who are dying and those close to them amidst COVID-19 visiting restrictions

This resource has been designed to support health and social care staff manage situations where a person’s family or close friends are unable to see them before they die or sit with them at the time of death. The content should help staff feel more prepared and confident to do the best that they can during circumstances which can be challenging and upsetting for everyone involved.

The resource presents some general principles, tips for keeping in touch with families and information on the use of phone and video calls; all measures which it is hoped can bring comfort to the person who is dying, and those who are close to them, in their bereavement. It also highlights the importance of staff looking after themselves and seeking help and support for their wellbeing if they need it.



Click here to access a print friendly pdf file.

Supporting the spiritual care needs of those who are nearing the end of life

This guidance is designed to help health and social care staff meet the spiritual care needs of people who are approaching the end of life during the COVID-19 pandemic.

It cannot provide detailed information on every belief community; rather it outlines key points and principles, and signposts to where you can find more specific information as required.


Click here to access a print friendly pdf file

Delivering the news of a death by telephone

This short film was created before the COVID-19 pandemic and therefore some elements may not now be appropriate for the current situation within health and care settings, however many of the key points will still be of relevance for practitioners.

A transcript for this video can be found here.

A downloadable leaflet which accompanies the video can be found here.

Delivering Bad News COVID-19

This short animation, produced by the Irish Hospice Foundation suggests five steps to help deliver bad news during the COVID-19 pandemic.

It is based on an original film that the Irish Hospice Foundation launched before the pandemic which can be viewed here.

Click here and scroll down for links to other sources of information & education for health and social care staff and information for those who are bereaved