of donating a whole body for medical research
Why choose body donation?
A full body donation can provide
a compassionate and humane possible choice for a funeral. Although
full body donation is not as commonly known of as organ donation, it presents
an opportunity to donate a greater gift to the future of humankind.
A body donation to science
provides a vital learning mode for surgeons, which can enable them to develop
new techniques, or discover new life-saving procedures. Anatomical
full body donations have accounted for significant developments in the
fields of terminal diseases and neurological science.
An anatomical donation allows
a research institution to study new ways to understand and fight serious
diseases. Full body donation can support the progress of research
in fields such as cancer treatment, multiple sclerosis, Alzheimer’s and
Parkinson’s. An anatomical body donation to science is often attributed
with an unfair stigma, although the process of an anatomical full body
gift is not much different than the process a mortician follows for a standard
funeral. What differs is that an anatomical body donation facilities
the collection of viable tissues and specimens for important scientific
study, before the remains are cremated. The cremated remains can
then be returned to the family if this is their wish. The timescale
for this will vary dependent upon the institution selected.
Terms and acceptance onto a
whole body donation program
If you or a loved one is considering
cremation as an alternative to a traditional funeral, you could consider
making an anatomical gift. Only the legal next-of-kin(s) of
the deceased can provide the necessary consent for donation if the donor
did not provide it to the specific accepting program prior to death.
Individuals may request a consent form and will be supplied with information
about policies and procedures that will take place after the potential
donor is deceased.
Body donation is not regulated
through licensure and inspection by the federal government and most states.
The legal right for an individual to choose body donation is governed by
the Uniform Anatomical Gift Act, which has been largely adopted by most
states. Laws relating to the transportation and disposition of human bodies
There are a number of organizations
that provide a free cremation to those who make a full body donation to
science. Making an anatomical gift is a final act of caring and leaves
a legacy of hope for the future. Many medical and research institutes
accept whole body donations, you just need to check the specific requirements
and terms, as these differ according to each institute.
A donation can be a time-critical
decision, and requirements for accepting an anatomical donation can vary
between institutions and organizations, therefore it is recommended that
you conduct some research and preferably pre-register to donate.
This does not guarantee that the donation will be accepted at the time
of death, but does ensure that you are fully versant with the terms associated
with making your donation. For example, some institutions require
that the donor have registered at least 30 days before a death does occur.
Other institutions will accept at the time of death.
Sherril March 25th
My sister lives in Newport
News and wants to put down in her Will that she wants to donate her body
to science...what place, address, phone number would that be?
There is a national whole
body donation organization that you can pre-register with.
Great...can I have that info
and is there a charge
MedCure offer a complete
service at no cost to the family
Or I can always ask for
an info and registration pack to be sent to you
||Expert Author: Sara
Sara is the Editor in Chief
for US Funerals Online and has been researching and writing about the death
care industry in the US for the last 5 years.
Anatomical Gift Act
Donation Programs in the United States from Medical Institutes in the US
Last Revised: 02/11/2019