COVID-19

COVID-19  "Funeral procedures 1-3"

COVID-19  "Funeral procedures 1-3"

In accordance with guidelines from the CDC, State of Illinois, Illinois Funeral Directors Association and National Funeral Directors Association:

1. WHEN DEATH OCCURS 

  • When our funeral home is notified that a death has occurred and has been requested to transfer your loved one from the place of death to Vandenberg Funeral Home our directors will treat all places of death and persons present as potentially infectious.  
  • Prior to our arrival; we may ask medical questions regarding the health of family members, other patients and medical staff. 
  • Upon our arrival we will use universal precautions to assure our staff and those in attendance are safe from the potential spread of the virus.  We will be maintaining and executing social distancing and will require all people present to do the same. 
  • Directors may be wearing Personal Protective Equipment (aka. “PPE”)  
  • After applying a topical disinfectant, we will transfer your loved one to the funeral home.

2. ARRANGING A FUNERAL OR PRE-PLANNING

  • Vandenberg funeral home directors have the capabilities to arrange a funeral via a series of electronic formats. Until further notice, our directors will be arranging funerals over the phone, email, tele-conference,  or FaceTime. 

3. VISITATION & FUNERAL SERVICES

  • Face coverings are required per mandates set fourth by the State of Illinois
  • We are limiting our funeral and visitation services to coincide with the  regulations set fourth by the medical professionals and elected officials. The most current mandate in Cook County is not more than fifty (50) individuals in any given space, and in Will County twenty-five (25) individuals in any given space. This applies to the entire funeral home. 
  • It is our professional opinion to suggest to those not in the immediate family, to offer condolences via the funeral home website (memorial tribute wall), or by attending the gathering for a short period of time.
  • Catholic Churches require a pre-registered list of individuals attending the Funeral Mass. Our directors will assist with this request. 
  • We also have available Zoom Video-Conference and  Facebook streaming services (this can be made both public and PRIVATE)
  • Family lounge and break room will be closed in effort to mitigate crowd gathering. 
  • We will continue to maintain an extremely clean and sanitized environment at the funeral home and urge everyone who visits to use hand sanitizer up entry and exit and to continually wash their hands.   
  • Social distancing will be strongly urged for all guests including family.

We understand that this time is not easy to understand or embrace. However we believe that following these guidelines are essential to do our part in ending this world pandemic. Thank you for your understanding 

CDC Guidelines for funerals during pandemic 

Public Gathering Guidance

On March 15, the CDC issued new guidance for mass gatherings recommending that for the next eight weeks (until May 10), organizers cancel or postpone in-person events that consist of 50 people or more throughout the United States.

On March 16, the White House released “The President’s Coronavirus Guidelines for America - 15 Days to Slow the Spread.” Among these guidelines are that people “Avoid social gatherings in groups of more than 10 people” for the next 15 days. On March 29, the President extended his guidance with"30 Days to Slow the Spread," which includes the recommendation that organizers not plan public gatherings of more than 10 people - to April 30.

It would appear this would impact funerals/viewings in that they would be limited – perhaps to immediate family only – for the next 15 days. After this 15-day period concludes, the restrictions would continue with the CDC's eight-week limitations on mass gatherings.

As with any gathering or event, you should check with local health officials to determine whether there are any prohibitions on holding public events, such as a visitation or funeral. Some states or cities have begun restricting public gatherings; these restrictions take precedence. We encourage you to follow this guidance for the safety of all funeral home staff and the families you serve. 

April 1, 2020: NFDA Announces New Guidelines for Funerals During COVID-19 Pandemic  

  • Note for funeral homes: NFDA’s recommendation for funeral gatherings is just that – a recommendation. If your state has issued mandates or guidance that is more stringent, you MUST follow those local limits – no exceptions. For example, your state may require that services be limited to 10 total people including family, clergy and funeral home staff. Or, you may be limited to 5, as is the case in Connecticut. Or, your state may have completely banned funerals, as is the case in New Jersey. Please follow the mandates in your state and adhere to whatever prescribed limits that have been put into place.