To donate a body for medical research, one must contact a body donation program, register his interest to make an anatomical or whole body donation, and fill out donor consent forms, according to U.S. Funerals Online. Some organizations require donors to register at least 30 days before death, while others may accept a donation at the time of death.
To donate a body to the University of Minnesota Medical School, one must fill out a donation authorization consent form available on the website of the institution. Donors must be at least 18 years old and legally competent at the time of filling out the form, states UMM. The institution reserves the right to accept or decline donations.
A donor can complete pre-need consent forms or have the legal next of kin complete the forms after his death, in accordance to the Uniform Anatomical Gift Act, states U.S. Funerals Online. When death occurs, the next of kin contacts the body donation company, which arranges to collect the body, coordinate the donation process, and arrange for cremation after a predetermined period. Many medical institutions accept body donations from anyone, including people with pre-existing conditions such as cancer, dementia and stroke. However, the bodies of donors with fluid retention, syphilis or severe viral or bacterial infections may not be accepted.