Many people who toss around the idea of body donation wonder how you become eligible for body donation. The truth is that it is actually a lot easier than you think. There are only a few restrictions surrounding body donation and far more positives then negatives.
First of all, if you want to make sure that your body is going to be accepted for body donation you need to pre-register before your time of death. It is extremely hard to arrange for a body to be donated for death at the last minute because there are screening processes involved and it simply may be too tasking on your family. Save them the trouble by filling out all necessary forms beforehand. Then you will have a donor card on you that will expedite the process later.
Tell Your Family
It is also very important that you talk with your family about your choice before your death. The same way that you would let your family know if you wanted to be buried or cremated, you need to make sure that you tell them about your wish to donate your body to science. In some states if your family denies your wish then your body cannot be donated, even if you have filled out the appropriate forms. Therefore, it is important that everyone is on the same page.
Live in an Eligible state
This is a simple requirement, but still an important one. If you want to make sure that you can donate your body to science you have to make sure that you live or die in a state in which it is legal to do so. Right now it is legal everywhere but Minnesota and New Jersey although laws and regulations about whole body donation can change o it helps to stay up on the laws. Once you sign up with an agency they will also keep you apprised of any changes.
Have No STD history
Some health problems may make you unable to donate your body to science. Some of the most common reasons are an active diagnosis of Hepatitis B or C or HIV/AIDS at the time of death. Check with your individual agency to see what health screening they might have in place to see if you qualify.
The last reason that most people get turned down is because they are either severely underweight or overweight when they die making them undesirable research subjects.
If you pass all of the above criteria, then you are eligible for body donation.Outside of these basic criterions, there are no other aspects that you need to worry about. There is no age limit attached to body donation and most natural causes of death of perfectly acceptable. By choosing whole body donation you may be helping to save the lives of others in the future that benefit from the advances that study of your body produces.
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Alan Karmar writes about health, science and technology.