At the time of death, the Anatomical Gift Program must be notified by telephone immediately. The individual responsible for making final arrangements should call: 336-207-3813. Timely notification is essential to ensure proper handling for an acceptable donation. Our program staff is available 24 hours a day, ready to promptly initiate the donation procedure. The Anatomical Gift staff will confirm acceptance and make arrangements for receiving the donor from the place of death. Transportation of the donor will be arranged and paid for by the Anatomical Gift Program. A signed death certificate must be obtained from the funeral director contacted by the Anatomical Gift Program. Once the death certificate has been obtained, the Anatomical Gift Program will make arrangements for transportation. A donor’s body must be received within 24 hours after death, unless specific arrangements have been approved by the Anatomical Gift Program. A body that has been autopsied, embalmed or is known to carry an infectious disease cannot be accepted.

After Studies Completed

Studies are usually completed within two years. At the conclusion of studies the Anatomical Gift Program will comply with the donor’s instructions regarding disposition of the cremated remains as selected on the Donor Consent Form. Cremation is at the expense of the Anatomical Gift Program. The options for disposition are:

  • retrieval of the cremated remains;
  • delivery of the cremated remains (with a written request to the Anatomical Gift Program);
  • or scattering of the cremated remains at sea.

The ashes will only be returned to the individual designated on the Donor Consent Form following the chain of custody.

Honoring Donors

Each year, Elon University’s Anatomical Gift Program holds a service to honor all donors from that year. Family members are invited and welcomed at the service. Faculty, staff and students from the Elon University School of Health Sciences and undergraduate biology students from the McMichael Science Center are also invited. The service provides an opportunity for students to express their appreciation of the donors to the donors’ families. The memorial service is a time for students and families to come together and find closure and comfort.