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Mortuary Service

Description of Service

The mortuary provides a dignified, efficient, and compassionate service in attending to the needs of relatives, and the respectful care of the deceased. The mortuary includes a reception area, a refrigeration room, two chapels, a room for relatives, an area for viewing deceased, a bathroom, and an embalming facility (members of the public do not have access to either the refrigeration room or the embalming facility). The Mortuary also has a seperate autopsy department consisting of autopsy theatre's and technician's offices.

Deceased patients

Patients who die in St. Vincent’s University Hospital or St. Vincent’s Private Hospital are brought to the mortuary where they remain until they can be released to the family through the Funeral Director.

Funeral Director

Funeral Directors liaise with mortuary staff regarding the release of a deceased, including any issues pertaining to a post mortem examination. Embalming of the deceased can be facilitated in the morturary, and an embalming service level agreement between SVUH and Funeral Directors ensures appropriate care of the deceased.

Visiting a deceased relative: A family may wish to spend time with their deceased relative before removal from the mortuary. To facilitate this request, the deceased is presented appropriately and placed in the Chapel of Peace, prior to the arrival of the family.

Relatives Room

A Relatives Room is available to families who may need space and privacy while spending time with their deceased relative. This room can also be used by families to discuss any relevant issues with mortuary staff.

Removal Service

The mortuary facilitates families who wish to have a Removal Service for their deceased relative. This can take place in either the Chapel of Rest or Chapel of Peace. Following the Service, the deceased is removed from the mortuary chapel by the Funeral Director. Mortuary staff facilitate removal services in conjunction with the chaplaincy team and try to accommodate the requirements of different religious denominations to the greatest extent possible.

Autopsy Department

Pathology staff within the Autopsy Department will liaise with the Coroner's Office and An Garda in relation to all reportable dealths within SVUH or SVPH. Where an autopsy has been ordered, the post mortem examination will be carried out in the upmost professional and dignified manner and the pathology staff will liaise with the mortuary staff an Family Liaison Officer upon completion of the post mortem examination enabling the deceased to be made available for release to the funeral director.


Hours of Service

Mortuary: 9am to 5pm Monday to Saturday


Entering the hospital grounds from Nutley Lane, take the first right turn. The mortuary is the building on the right hand side. The entrance is at the rear of the building facing Nutley Lane.

Main Contact Details

Mortuary- Tel: 01 221 4238.  (Bleep 323).

Pathology Autopsy Department- Tel: 01 221 4261

Other Relevant information

Before a deceased can be released to the family, it is necessary to ascertain whether or not a post mortem examination is required. In this regard, mortuary staff liaise, as required, with the following: Clinical and Nursing staff, Family, Pathology Department, Coroner’s Office, An Garda and the Funeral Director.

Information Leaflet

A Bereavement Pack can be offered to relatives of patients who die in St. Vincent’s University Hospital. The Bereavement Pack is normally given to a family on the ward where the patient has died (or in the Emergency Department).

The Bereavement Pack includes booklets with the following information:

  • Practical Information for Relatives following Bereavement (SVUH)
  • Bereavement (Citizens Information Service)
  • Bereavement Grant (Dept. Social & Family Affairs)
  • Mortuary Services card – contact telephone number (SVUH)