How do we define death?

Defining brain death  Before the ’60s, death was diagnosed after a doctor couldn’t find a pulse or heartbeat. The increasing use of ventilators, however, meant that unconscious patients were being kept alive. In the late ’60s, thoughts in the medical world turned to creating a clearer definition: death is when the brain stem is irreversibly […]

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What happens at a natural burial?

What to expect at a natural burial You’ve heard of natural burial – all that fresh air, compostable material and the sense that the person who’s died is getting back, literally, to their roots – and you think it’s a great idea. For some people, though, going to a natural burial won’t be something they’ve […]

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How will living longer affect healthcare?

How will living longer affect healthcare? We’re living longer and this is changing the way we die. Breakthroughs in healthcare mean we’re surviving infectious diseases that would have killed us off in the past, and changes to diet and lifestyle are enabling us to enjoy longer old age.    We’re still all going to die […]

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The world’s biggest graveyard

Wadi al-Salaam: the world’s biggest graveyard Translated to ‘Valley of Peace’, Wadi Al-Salaam is an Islamic cemetery in Iraq. Located near the holy city of Najaf (which is itself one of Iraq’s biggest cities), it’s population of nearly 600,00 pales in comparison to the number of deceased populating the graveyard. Having begun its operations over […]

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When can I have a funeral?

When can I have a funeral? Funerals typically take place one to two weeks after death, with most funerals happening on a weekday. Funerals can take place much sooner than that, though. Many religions and cultures lay importance on burying loved ones quickly after they’ve died. We know there’s usually never a great time for […]

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