Help Shape the Future of Medicine By Becoming a Body Donor
MedCure connects people wanting to donate their bodies to science – whole body donors – with the physicians and anatomical researchers who are uncovering tomorrow’s medical breakthroughs.
Whole Body Donors
Advancing the Science of Medicine with a Priceless, No Cost Option
Everything we know about the human body comes from studying whole body donors. At MedCure, we connect you or your loved ones to the physicians, surgeons, and researchers who are continuing this vital work. Their discoveries and innovations help people live longer, make treatments less invasive, and create new ways to prevent illness or disease.
We are constantly overwhelmed by the incredible generosity and selflessness of our donors. MedCure honors their gifts by covering, upon acceptance, all expenses related to the donation process. These costs include transportation from the place of passing, cremation, and a certified copy of the death certificate, as well as the return of cremated remains to the family or a scattering of the ashes at sea. By request, we can provide a family letter that shares more detailed information on how you or your loved one contributed to medical science.
Connect with Us
Donation Coordinators are available 24 hours a day to answer your questions and assist you with the donation process. Whether you are registering your future intent to be a body donor, you are currently receiving hospice care, or if your loved one has already passed, we can guide you through every step.
How It Works
I have always wanted to ‘give back’ and this is the perfect way. I was brought into this world via medical science and it is my choice to leave that way. MedCure and their representatives handled both my parents in the most kind and professional manner. They made me feel comfortable with my decisions and had such compassion for all my thoughts and questions.”
MedCure offers a pre-screening program for patients who are receiving hospice care or who have been given a life expectency of 6 months or less. While it isn’t necessary for your loved one to complete the screening ahead of time, it does make the call to MedCure at the time of passing much easier on the family. You can download our Hospice Patient Registry Kit to help guide you through each step of the process.
Body Donor Registry
If you or your loved one is close to passing, or if your loved one has just passed, please bypass pre-registry and phone MedCure right away.
Registering for the Future
If you would like to register your intent to donate, please complete the pre-registry form and click the SEND button. After you register, we will mail you a welcome kit with additional information within two to three weeks. This kit explains the body donation process and includes a donor card for your wallet.
We welcome most everyone into our donation program, however not everyone is eligible, and we encourage you to have an alternate plan. See our eligibility notice below for more information.
Finally, please make sure you talk to your loved ones about your wish to donate. Donating yourself or a family member is a very personal decision, but one that should be shared with others who might be involved in the process.
If Your Loved One Has Passed
MedCure is your first call at the time of passing and will work with a local funeral home on your behalf. After donation, partial cremated remains will be returned to the family or may be scattered at sea. By request, MedCure will also send a family letter notifying family members how you or your loved one contributed to medical science.
Most people who wish to donate can. There is no upper age limit and most disease processes are acceptable. In an effort to ensure that donations will ultimately be matched with medical professionals, certain standard acceptance criteria must be met at the time of passing.
The most common reasons for decline are a diagnosis of HIV/AIDS, hepatitis B or C, a history of intravenous (IV) drug use, recent incarceration or institutionalization, and being severely over or under weight at the time of death.
MedCure accepts donors from all states within the continental United States except New Jersey, Minnesota, North Dakota and Arkansas.
If someone has already passed, they can still become a whole body donor. However, MedCure should be contacted immediately at 1-866-560-2525 to increase the likelihood of acceptance. Also, if a patient or loved one is currently receiving hospice care and/or is close to passing, MedCure should be called immediately. Donation Coordinators are available 24 hours a day to assist in the completion and submission of necessary consent documentation.
Most people who wish to donate are eligible. MedCure has no upper age restrictions and can accept donations from individuals with a wide variety of medical conditions. The most common reasons for ineligibility include a diagnosis of certain communicable diseases such as HIV/AIDS or hepatitis B or C, history of intravenous (IV) drug use, recent prolonged incarceration, institutionalization, or homelessness, and being severely over or under weight at the time of passing. MedCure accepts donors from all states within the continental United States except New Jersey, Minnesota, North Dakota, and Arkansas.
Only individuals on hospice care or close to passing need to call MedCure directly to become whole body donors. However, Donation Coordinators are available 24 hours a day to answer any questions surrounding the registration and donation processes.
If you are already a registered organ transplant donor, you can still register to be a whole body donor. At the time of passing, priority will be given to transplant donation because of the ability to immediately save or change a life. In a few cases, MedCure can arrange for a donor to ultimately donate to both a transplant program and MedCure’s whole body donation program. Such matters are determined by a MedCure lab manager on a case-by-case basis at the time of passing. The one exception is eye or cornea donations, which never hinders a whole body donation.
Once a MedCure donor is accepted at the time of final transportation, all donation-related expenses will be covered. These expenses include transportation arrangements, one certified copy of the death certificate, cremation, and either the return of the cremated remains to the family or a scattering at sea.
Upon completion of the eligibility screening at the time of passing, MedCure will make arrangements for transportation and care. MedCure covers transportation expenses once acceptance is determined at time of final transportation to a MedCure facility. Donor families are encouraged to not contact a funeral home themselves at the time of passing.
Families typically receive the death certificate (DC) within 4 to 6 weeks, depending upon which county or state is processing the DC. Cremated remains are sent to the family approximately 6 to 12 weeks after the time of passing.
Unfortunately, MedCure cannot guarantee matching a donation with a specific type of research or organization. Placement largely depends on current medical research and training needs at the time of the donor’s passing. Families may request a letter from MedCure that provides general information surrounding how a specific donation helped to advance medical science.
Open casket funerals are not possible with whole body donation. However, many families choose to hold a memorial service after cremated remains are received.
MedCure can provide donor families with a letter containing general information about the types of research and/or educational programs to which their loved one’s donation has contributed. Since there is no autopsy performed as part of the donation process, we are unable to provide information regarding diagnoses or cause of death in these letters. It does take some time for us to gather all of this information back from the researchers and educators that we work with, so please be advised that this letter can take between 8 – 12 months to be sent to the family. If a donor family is interested in receiving this letter, they can call our Donation Coordination team any time after their loved one’s passing to request it over the phone.
MedCure is not licensed to provide obituary assistance. Local newspaper obituary departments should be contacted for help writing or publishing an obituary. An obituary department will provide information on the submission process and any state-specific legal requirements. If a family chooses to mention MedCure in an obituary, MedCure should not be represented as a licensed funeral establishment with phrases such as, “Arrangements by MedCure” or, “Cremation provided by MedCure.” An appropriate reference would be, “Whole body donation made through MedCure.”