Donor & Family Services
Our Department of Donor and Family Services is staffed by compassionate and expertly trained individuals dedicated to serving the needs of donors and donor families. Our Coordinators are available to provide assistance in the office 8am-8pm EST Monday through Friday and always reachable for after hours emergencies 24 hours a day, 7 days per week through our on-call answering service.
Anatomy Gifts Registry wants the donation process to be as uncomplicated for you and your family as possible. Every case we accept is handled with care by expertly trained Coordinators. If someone does not qualify for AGR's program, alternative options are provided for consideration. Our registry is home to tens of thousands of people who have made a wish to someday leave a lasting gift to humanity. All decisions regarding final acceptance are made at the time of passing regardless of pre-registration.
Donor Suitability Screening
- Donor passing must occur in an area we serve within the contiguous United States
- Donor must be over 18 years of age
- Donor height and weight are taken into consideration for acceptance
- Donor must be clear of contagious or infectious history including but not limited to; Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C, HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis, Syphilis, Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (CJD) or Variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob (vCJD), and or other pandemic diseases
- Donor must have a knowledgeable medical historian to provide a medical/social history close to or at the time of passing
- Donor must have a legal Authorizing Agent who is responsible for contacting AGR at the time of passing and to provide donation authorization after Donor passing (when applicable)
Future Donors - AGR hosts a national donor registry with current enrollment exceeding 17,000. Registration involves a simple pre-screening followed by the signing of a consent form indicating one's intent to donate. This allows you to share your wishes in advance with your family. After registration you’ll receive a set of laminated cards with an ID number unique to your file. It is important to carry one card on you and give the other to your next-of-kin or authorizing agent. You may also make additional copies of your card. Future Donor enrollment does not guarantee final acceptance at the time of passing. Anatomic donation is always subject to many factors that contribute to deciding donor suitability. AGR recommends that future donors keep their family informed of their health history as medical information is an essential factor in determining acceptance. While AGR makes every attempt to honor the wish for whole body donation, there are circumstances that do preclude someone from donation at the time of passing. We highly recommend all registrants maintain a backup plan and share this with their family, in case they are not eligible for donation. If you would like to sign up for our Registry or if you work with people/families who would also like to register, please contact us for a Registration Packet.
Donors in declining health/palliative care stage - AGR strives to make the donation process as simplified as possible. Our expertly trained staff members provide caring support to help families cope with the end of life planning. To help ease the transition, we recommend completing the final registration process once your loved one's health is in decline. A Donor Coordinator will review your loved one’s medical history and gather some vital statistical information necessary for determining donor suitability. If donation is an option, AGR will provide the donor family with a Donor Registration Number and instructions for how to proceed once passing occurs. Authorization must be given after passing has been officially pronounced and will be obtained from the Authorizing Aget/Legal Next-of-Kin via recorded telephone conferencing or by faxed consent forms. If AGR must decline a donor, our organization will provide the family with potential alternative options. AGR recommends all families have a secondary option in place in the event the donation must be declined.
*If you have just lost a loved one, please call AGR immediately at (800) 300-5433 to see if your family member qualifies for whole body donation. The process involves an evaluation of death circumstances, the completion of a medical/social history by a knowledgeable medical historian and obtainment of donation authorization with the Authorizing Agent/Legal Next-of-Kin.*
Understanding Authorization & Next-of-Kin Classification
AGR operates under the guise of the UAGA, which stands for Uniform Anatomical Gift Act.
UAGA governs organ donations for the purpose of transplantation, and it also governs the making of anatomical gifts to be used in the study of medicine. The law prescribes the forms by which such gifts can be made. It also provides that in the absence of such a document, a surviving spouse, or if there is no spouse, a list of specific relatives in order of preference, can make the gift. It also seeks to limit the liability of health care providers who act on good faith representations that a deceased patient meant to make an anatomical gift. The act also prohibits trafficking and trafficking in human organs for profit from donations for transplant or therapy. AGR abides by UAGA.
Below is a list in order of persons allowed to make an anatomical gift:
(1) Health care Agent/Power of Attorney given permission to make donation arrangements-agent must be able to provide documents proving rights to make decisions
(2) The spouse of the decedent
(3) Adult children of the decedent (over 18 years of age)
(4) Parents of the decedent
(5) Adult siblings of the decedent
(6) Adult grandchildren of the decedent
(7) Grandparents of the decedent (or any other blood relative)
(8) An adult who exhibited special care and concern for the decedent (Court Appointed Guardian)
(9) The persons who were acting as the [guardians] of the person of the decedent at the time of death
If there is more than one member of a class entitled to make an anatomical gift, all members of that particular class must be in agreement to move forward with making an anatomical donation. For example, if the donor has several children, all children must be in agreement about donation to move forward with authorization. AGR will decline any donation whereby objection about donation within the same class is notable.