"The option to donate for medical research was my mother's final wish." - Lisa
There is no substitute for human tissue when studying the body. Physicians, doctors, medical educators, and researchers around the world rely on donated tissue to help further medical advancements and/or to complete their studies on the many debilitating diseases that continue to afflict mankind.
SWIBA reimburses the funeral home for a direct cremation (cremation, transportation, and filing of the death certificate). If a donor’s family chooses to have an urn, memorial service, ship out of ashes, etc., those additional selections can be arranged with the funeral home at the family’s expense.
All SWIBA whole-body donors are cremated and therefore a traditional funeral with an open “viewing” casket is not an option. However, a closed casket service is a possibility.
The donation process does not slow the cremation process. Remains are usually returned to the family within weeks.
Absolutely. SWIBA adheres to strict confidentiality practices. All donors are assigned a unique identification number that is used throughout the donation process to keep the donor’s personal information confidential.
Most major religions are supportive of organ and tissue donation, but SWIBA recommends checking with your spiritual advisor.
SWIBA is incorporated as a taxable organization. The medical education and research programs that rely on SWIBA for anatomical tissue specimens are both taxable and tax exempt.
SWIBA is a self-funded medical education and research tissue bank that receives reimbursements from universities, government agencies, and corporate and private medical institutions for the professional services we provide. SWIBA adheres to all state and federal regulations through the Uniform Anatomical Gift Act.
No. After death has occurred, the legal next-of-kin can consent to donation if all family members are in agreement. However, proactively making the decision to consent and registering prior to death is always encouraged.
No. An autopsy does not exclude donation for medical education and research. However, a testable blood sample will need to be drawn prior to the autopsy.
Yes. The return of cremated remains to the next-of-kin is an option and is free of charge.
This is difficult to do since different research programs accept tissue at different times. However, SWIBA will work with you or your loved ones to make every reasonable effort to fulfill your wish.
No. Transplant and medical education and research have very different exclusions. Transplant exclusions are much stricter, requiring viable, non-diseased tissue. However, in medical education and research donation, non-infectious diseased tissue is desirable and is often matched up with a medical educator or researcher studying that particular disease.
There is not a definite answer to this question. It depends on which organs and tissue were donated for transplant and what current organs and tissue are needed by medical educators and researchers. Contact SWIBA for your donation options.
Almost anyone can donate regardless of age and health. Although a few exclusions exist, most people qualify. Please contact SWIBA for your donation options.
You will receive cremains back. It is hard to determine how much your loved one will be able to donate. We try to maximize the gift of donation.