The business of bodies: Ethical perspectives on for-profit body donation companies

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

18 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Human cadavers are a scarce resource that have educational, research and clinical value. While the tissues have great value, it is illegal in many countries to pay for them. In the United States, a number of for-profit body acquisition companies have been established over the past decade. These companies obtain bodies which were freely donated by the individuals or their families. The companies distribute the specimens to surgical training organizations, researchers and educational institutions. These businesses do not charge the receiving organizations for the bodies; they do, however, charge a fee that covers the transport, handling and other services which creates a profit for their companies. These types of businesses are described and analyzed as to whether they constitute an ethically appropriate mechanism to obtain and distribute bodies. The role of organizations and governments in establishing policies and regulations for the appropriate treatment of human remains is addressed. Recommendations are given for best practices in the ethical use and regulation of willed bodies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalClinical Anatomy
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - 2015
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

Organizations
Fees and Charges
Cadaver
Practice Guidelines
Research Personnel
Research
Body Remains
Handling (Psychology)

Keywords

  • For-profit donation programs
  • Not-for-profit donation programs
  • Regulations
  • Willed body programs

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Anatomy
  • Histology

Cite this

@article{29538c62d69545e1a908c76a9c658661,
title = "The business of bodies: Ethical perspectives on for-profit body donation companies",
abstract = "Human cadavers are a scarce resource that have educational, research and clinical value. While the tissues have great value, it is illegal in many countries to pay for them. In the United States, a number of for-profit body acquisition companies have been established over the past decade. These companies obtain bodies which were freely donated by the individuals or their families. The companies distribute the specimens to surgical training organizations, researchers and educational institutions. These businesses do not charge the receiving organizations for the bodies; they do, however, charge a fee that covers the transport, handling and other services which creates a profit for their companies. These types of businesses are described and analyzed as to whether they constitute an ethically appropriate mechanism to obtain and distribute bodies. The role of organizations and governments in establishing policies and regulations for the appropriate treatment of human remains is addressed. Recommendations are given for best practices in the ethical use and regulation of willed bodies.",
keywords = "For-profit donation programs, Not-for-profit donation programs, Regulations, Willed body programs",
author = "Champney, {Thomas H.}",
year = "2015",
doi = "10.1002/ca.22643",
language = "English (US)",
journal = "Clinical Anatomy",
issn = "0897-3806",
publisher = "Wiley-Liss Inc.",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - The business of bodies

T2 - Ethical perspectives on for-profit body donation companies

AU - Champney, Thomas H.

PY - 2015

Y1 - 2015

N2 - Human cadavers are a scarce resource that have educational, research and clinical value. While the tissues have great value, it is illegal in many countries to pay for them. In the United States, a number of for-profit body acquisition companies have been established over the past decade. These companies obtain bodies which were freely donated by the individuals or their families. The companies distribute the specimens to surgical training organizations, researchers and educational institutions. These businesses do not charge the receiving organizations for the bodies; they do, however, charge a fee that covers the transport, handling and other services which creates a profit for their companies. These types of businesses are described and analyzed as to whether they constitute an ethically appropriate mechanism to obtain and distribute bodies. The role of organizations and governments in establishing policies and regulations for the appropriate treatment of human remains is addressed. Recommendations are given for best practices in the ethical use and regulation of willed bodies.

AB - Human cadavers are a scarce resource that have educational, research and clinical value. While the tissues have great value, it is illegal in many countries to pay for them. In the United States, a number of for-profit body acquisition companies have been established over the past decade. These companies obtain bodies which were freely donated by the individuals or their families. The companies distribute the specimens to surgical training organizations, researchers and educational institutions. These businesses do not charge the receiving organizations for the bodies; they do, however, charge a fee that covers the transport, handling and other services which creates a profit for their companies. These types of businesses are described and analyzed as to whether they constitute an ethically appropriate mechanism to obtain and distribute bodies. The role of organizations and governments in establishing policies and regulations for the appropriate treatment of human remains is addressed. Recommendations are given for best practices in the ethical use and regulation of willed bodies.

KW - For-profit donation programs

KW - Not-for-profit donation programs

KW - Regulations

KW - Willed body programs

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=84947967754&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=84947967754&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1002/ca.22643

DO - 10.1002/ca.22643

M3 - Article

C2 - 26474530

JO - Clinical Anatomy

JF - Clinical Anatomy

SN - 0897-3806

ER -