Giving Back with a Cause


A discussion on death and dying is usually a difficult topic to address. What’s even more difficult is the subject of body donation. It is vital for a caregiver to have that uncomfortable conversation regarding a loved one’s request regarding what they would like to take place after their death. Body donation just might be a topic of discussion. Any individual over 18 years old can donate their body before death by completing an Anatomical Gift form.


Did you know, The American Association for Anatomy (AAA) is the professional scientific association for faculty members, research professionals, and students in the anatomical sciences! They have a 130-year history of supporting the work of advancing anatomical science through research, education, and professional development. Body donation is an integral part of medical education in the United States, with almost all medical and dental schools and many other health professions or undergraduate institutions, using some form of body donation material in their teaching. The rules and regulations surrounding body donation are clear and regulated on a state-by-state basis. Medical schools have staff on site, including licensed funeral directors, to handle the storage, identification, handling, and final disposition of remains. The use of donated bodies in biomedical science is a precious gift. AAA believes strongly in the legal and ethical use of donated bodies which helps to teach the next generation of healthcare professionals, including future doctors, nurses, physical therapists, research scientists, and many others. The AAA promotes the donation of bodies only to accredited universities and colleges or through a State Anatomical Program.


The Mount Sinai School of Medicine Anatomical Gift Program is one of the many participants in the New York City Area. 16-24 months after donation, the body is cremated, and the ashes are given to a family member or placed into Cypress Hill Cemetery. In addition, each donor is recognized and acknowledged for their contribution to education and research to the school. Their name is placed on a wall in the student lecture hall of Mt Sinai. Body donation is yet another way of giving back.


If you are interested in donating your body to science, please contact your nearest medical school to inquire about policies related to body donation. Each state in the United States has different rules and regulations regarding body donation. COME is here for you. Contact us with your questions and concerns at 718-379-3159 or info@comeoutreach.org.


Please join us for our monthly 45 mins informational session on Tuesday, May 18, 2021. Topics: Hospice Care, presented by VNSNY. Learn more about the services hospice offer regarding chronic diseases. You can RSVP online at www.comeoutreach.org to receive the link to join.


Diane Cooper


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