Board of Funeral Directors and Embalmers
Frequently Asked Questions related to COVID-19
A recent continuing education course that I was scheduled to attend was cancelled due to concerns surrounding COVID-19. Will the Board consider requests for extensions to the continuing education requirements for renewal of licensure?
Updated March 18, 2020:
The Board of Funeral Directors and Embalmers has granted an extension of continuing competency requirements for a period of six months after the deadline for any renewal due by March 31.
You are encouraged to complete continuing education hours on-line before the renewal deadline. (To access a listing of Board-approved CE providers and courses that may be offered online, please visit the Board’s website at: https://www.dhp.virginia.gov/funeral/docs/FDE_ApprovedCEProviders.pdf).
Remember that you will have to make up incomplete hours and will not be able to double count CE hours for the next renewal period.
On the renewal form, you will need to check “no” to the question about completion of continuing competency requirements. Do not falsify information on the form by checking “yes” if you are using the six-month extension. You will still be able to renew and your license/registration will be valid. There will be a notation in the system that you have a six-month extension.Also, please note that, where licensees utilize self-study courses or activities to fulfill CE requirements, the Board has issued the following guidance regarding the calculation of time credit: Guidance Document 65-1, Time credit for continuing education courses, re-adopted April 17, 2018.
Updated July 21, 2020:
Licensees should follow the care and handling requirements that currently appear in the Board’s statutes and regulations. The Board has not issued any waivers of these regulations at this time.
The following agencies and funeral service provider organizations have posted information and resources related to appropriate precautions for handling decedents who are suspected of or have confirmed cases of COVID-19.
- Virginia Department of Health (VDH) information on COVID-19 can be accessed at www.vdh.virginia.gov.
- The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) (www.cdc.gov) regularly provides updated information, including information for funeral practitioners and information on handling decedents who had COVID-19.
- The Office of the Chief Medical Examiner (OCME) previously issued a memo on PPE: Read the OCME memo.
- The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has developed interim guidance to help prevent worker exposure to COVID-19, which can be found on OSHA's website. Please see OSHA's information specific to postmortem care workers and employers.
- The National Funeral Directors’ Association has compiled resources and information at: https://www.nfda.org/covid-19.
I am unable to obtain Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for my facility and my supply is running low. Does the Board have any resources?
The funeral provider associations in Virginia, the Virginia Funeral Directors’ Association, the Virginia Morticians’ Association, and the Association of Independent Funeral Homes of Virginia, may have additional information on suppliers or sources of PPE and equipment for funeral practitioners.
In addition, funeral establishments and crematories in need of PPE supplies may contact their local coordinator of emergency management to relay their concerns about supply shortages and the need for additional resources. The Virginia Department of Emergency Management (VDEM) maintains a directory of local emergency managers at this link.
I do not have the storage capacity to accommodate multiple decedents in my facility. Where can I go for assistance?
The funeral provider associations in Virginia, the Virginia Funeral Directors’ Association, the Virginia Morticians’ Association, and the Association of Independent Funeral Homes of Virginia, may have additional information on storage resources across the state, including facilities with additional capacity.
In addition, local emergency management coordinators may have additional information about local, regional, or state storage resources that may assist facilities with an increased number of decedents due to COVID-19.