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Durham University

Centre for Death and Life Studies

COVID-19 hub and resources

From the CDALS Director and Associates

  • Our CDALS Director, Douglas Davies, has written a short essay for the website on life as a core British value and the NHS's increasingly vital social role in carrying it: see The NHS: More Than a Health Service – Carrying the Value of Life (13 May 2020).
  • See also Prof Davies' brief discussion of Grief in the time of Covid-19, also promoting this COVID-19 hub, on the Durham homepage (14 May 2020).
  • Our CDALS Associates have also been busy writing and giving interviews from their areas of expertise on aspects of the COVID-19 pandemic. These are collected as part of the list below: Analysis and news relevant to death and life studies.

Resources on grieving and remembering our dead

    On grief and supporting the bereaved

    • The Order of the Good Death: Covid-19 Toolkit.
      • To help you navigate the abundance of material online, we’ve created this COVID-19 Toolkit. Consider this your one-stop source for reliable and up-to-date facts and guidance on handling death, grief, and end of life planning under COVID-19.
      • Includes sections on:
        • Talking about death
        • Mental and emotional health

    • Centre for Death and Society (University of Bath): Covid-19 information and resources.
      • Our Centre for Death and Society (CDAS) Team Members curate a monthly collection of resources relating to the effects of Covid-19 on death and society.
      • Includes resources on:
        • grief and bereavement support

    • Cruse Bereavement Care: Coronavirus: dealing with bereavement and grief.

    • What's Your Grief?: How To Support Someone Grieving When You Can’t Be With Them.

    • End of Life Doula UK: Free death doula support during the pandemic.
      • In these unprecedented times we are available to provide Volunteer non-medical Doula support to any person who would like to reach out to us by telephone. There will be no costs associated with making this call and having a conversation with a Doula.

    • Durham University Human Resources: Resources on bereavement support
      • Durham HR has put together a set of useful resources, both Durham-specific and more generally applicable, on bereavement and supporting others with bereavement:

    On funerals and memorialising the dead

    • Down to Earth (Quaker Social Action): Coronavirus: organising a meaningful funeral.
      • Organising and attending a funeral can bring about a broad range of emotions, and knowing what to do at the moment will be difficult. We have put together a practical guide for organising a funeral during the pandemic, including ideas to help mark the cremation or burial of a loved one when people are unable to attend.

    • Video for Distant Memorials
      • If you have lost a loved one in times of the current pandemic, we will create a free memorial video for you. We want to help you to tell their story.

    • Keeper: Online memorial pages, livestreamed memorial services.
      • During this time of physical distancing, we understand that memorializing a loved one has become increasingly difficult. Since 2013, Keeper has been helping families preserve and share the memories of their loved ones, and we are focused on adding more options and features for our community during this difficult time.

    On legal and financial procedures following death

    • The Guardian: A guide to probate: everything you need to know (6 Jun 2020).
      • Tens of thousands of bereaved families who have lost loved ones to coronavirus are dealing with the financial procedures that follow a death – called probate – but are encountering a system hit by delays and bureaucracy ... here are the key points to remember

      Tracking spread and deaths

      • We are collating visual representations of the global spread of the disease and its death toll on our Visual trackers page. Below is one example.

      FT visualisation

      Source:, retrieved 22 May 2020

      Analysis and news relevant to death and life studies

      'Good death' and 'good grief' disrupted in a pandemic world

        (In)visibility of death during COVID-19

        Administration of death under pandemic strain

        Inequalities in mortalities: how a virus and social systems combine to kill

          Facing mortality in a life and death crisis