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PO Box 360
Trenton, NJ 08625-0360

For Release:
September 05, 2006

Fred M. Jacobs, M.D., J.D.

For Further Information Contact:
(609) 984-7160

DHSS Proposes to Readopt with Amendment N.J.A.C. 8:9, Governing Preparation, Handling, Transportation, Burial and Disinterment of Dead Human Bodies


The Consumer and Environmental Health Services of the Division of Epidemiology, Environmental and Occupational Health in the Public Health Services Branch of the Department of Health and Senior Services, in consultation with the Public Health Council, are proposing to readopt with amendments N.J.A.C. 8:9, Preparation, Handling, Transportation, Burial and Disinterment of Dead Human Bodies.  The notice of proposal appears in the September 5, 2006 issue of the New Jersey Register.

N.J.A.C. 8:9 establishes requirements for the preparation, handling, transportation, burial, and disinterment of dead human bodies applicable to local and State health officials, common carriers, and funeral directors.  The purpose of the chapter is to prevent the spread of disease and to provide for the sanitary handling of dead bodies.

The Department is proposing substantive and technical amendments throughout the chapter.  Noteworthy substantive amendments include the following.

The Department is proposing to amend N.J.A.C. 8:9-1.3, which specifies requirements for the preparation of a dead body.  The Department proposes the following substantive amendments to this section: (1) to expand the activities during which personal protective precautions must be used to include preparation of a dead body for dispositions other than burial, such as cremation, and to include handling of or work with disinterred remains; (2) to update the existing reference to the personal protective precautions that persons working with the dead are to use from the CDC’s 1989 standard known as the “Universal Precautions” to the CDC’s 1996 standard known as the “Standard Precautions,” as amended and supplemented; (3) to delete portions of the existing rule that would be redundant of and potentially in conflict with the Standard Precautions; (4) to require all persons authorized to be present during dead body preparation or embalming or work with disinterred remains to use the Standard Precautions, regardless of where the handling or preparation occurs; (5) to require the disposal in accordance with applicable laws of all waste material and used disposable nonreusable equipment generated in handling dead bodies, in addition to matters and fluids removed from a dead body; and (6) to amend the section heading to more accurately reflect the section content.

In addition, the Department is proposing to publish as Appendices A and B, and to incorporate by reference as part of the chapter, the required forms of permits for, respectively, transit and disinterment of dead human bodies.

The Department will convene a public hearing on the proposed readoption at 11:00 A.M. on Monday, October 16, 2006 at the New Jersey Department of Health and Senior Services, First Floor Auditorium, Health and Agriculture Building, 369 South Warren Street (at Market Street), Trenton, NJ 08608.  Persons wishing to comment on the proposal at the public hearing who wish to be placed on the list of speakers are requested to telephone Ms Davis at (609) 292-9382 by September 5, 2006, and to bring an extra written copy of their remarks for submission to the public record.

The public has until November 4, 2006 to comment on the proposal.  Persons wishing to comment on the proposal must submit their comments in writing to James A. Brownlee, M.P.H., Director, Consumer and Environmental Health Services, New Jersey Department of Health and Senior Services, PO Box 369, Trenton, NJ 08625-0369.  Written comments on the proposal must be postmarked on or before November 4, 2006, which is the close of the 60-day public comment period.

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