Notice to the Profession – Cremation of dead human bodies with radioactive implants

Effective January 1, 2020 the law prohibiting the cremation of dead human bodies with radioactive implants will change.

Crematorium operators may permit the cremation of a dead human body with radioactive implants if:

(a) it is at least two years after the day the body received the implant; or

(b) a lesser time has passed since the body received the implant, and it is safe to cremate the body.*

  • The BAO, OFSA and the OACFP will be meeting to formulate guidelines to assist operators in determining section (b) above.

Contracts for cremation services must be modified to include the following wording:

(a) a statement that a dead human body shall not be cremated if,

(i) the body has a pacemaker,

(ii) the body has a radioactive implant, except that a body that has a radioactive implant can be cremated if,

(A) it is at least two years after the day the body received the implant, or

(B) a lesser time has passed since the body received the implant, and it is safe to cremate the body, or

(iii) the body is in a casket that consists of or has on or in it material made of or containing non-flammable or hazardous material or chlorinated or fibre-reinforced plastic, other than incidental metal used in the construction of the casket or accompanying material; and

(b) a statement that a dead human body shall not be cremated unless a certificate issued by the coroner authorizing the cremation has been received by the operator.

Please note that the prohibition against cremating a dead human body with a pacemaker is unchanged and still in effect.

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