Body donation to the John A. Burns School of Medicine (JABSOM) is a highly personal decision with positive and far-ranging effects on our community, which may not be immediately apparent to most people. These benefits are like ripples in a pond, always expanding.
A donation serves future doctors as the best way to learn anatomy during their training. The knowledge imparted to JABSOM medical students through your donation helps provide quality healthcare for our entire community and for generations to come. Every donor is a “silent teacher,” also educating medical and allied medical professionals in Hawai‘i.
Medicine continually evolves, requiring continuing education. Last year, over 600 surgeons attended JABSOM workshops to learn new medical interventions that will directly benefit their patients.
Your donation might also become a “mentor” for allied medical professionals, such as EMT students from Kapi‘olani Community College, who are learning life-saving emergency medicine techniques. Your body may help train Hawai‘i Life Flight teams of advanced nurses and doctors, who transport injured and critically ill patients every day. None of this would be possible without the altruistic gift of body donation.
After our mentors and silent teachers have educated our healthcare students and professionals, we respectfully prepare them for cremation. The cremains are either returned to the family for private rites or held until our annual memorial service, depending on the stated wish of the donor. At our 2016 annual memorial service, we honored 150 donors, and over 500 family and friends attended. Later that afternoon, cremains of those who chose to be scattered at sea were paddled out beyond Magic Island by medical students and the Ānuenue Canoe Club. Family and friends watched the canoes as Celtic Pipes and Drums of Hawai‘i played in the background.
Body donation for medical education and research requires legal forms to be completed and returned to the JABSOM office.
The University of Hawai‘i’s Willed Body Program is the only whole body donation program in the state of Hawai‘i directly benefiting your community. For more information or to obtain a donor form, contact us using the information below.