Many people have become familiar with the Missouri Organ and Tissue Donation Registry through the periodic renewal of their driver’s license. Donation is a very personal decision and a much appreciated gift.
Most hospitals, funeral homes, and coroners are well informed about how the donation process typically operates in their area. Some hospitals maintain a working relationship with a particular transplant facility, and even have access to an on-site or near-by liaison that can visit with families and help them determine if their loved one is a qualified donor. When an eligible donor expires in or near the Cape Girardeau area, the body is usually transported for harvesting to a facility in a larger metropolitian area. (The transplant service usually pays for transportation to the facility and funeral home).
When considering donation, please remember an amount of trauma is involved in the harvesting process. This may complicate embalming and restoration which could possibly affect the apprearce of the body for viewing. In cases where someone is considering donation followed by embalming and casketed viewing of their loved one, it may be prudent to first consult with the funeral home. (Restoration charges associated with donation are usually paid by the transplant service).
Sometimes a person suffering from a rare disease becomes involved in an experimental treatment at a university or research hospital, and in advance they have made arrangements to donate the part of their body most affected by the disease. The funeral home will appreciate knowing of these arrangements in advance. For the benefit of all involved, we like to be aware of approximate turn-around time, and document who is responsible for transporting and paying the expenses associated with it. Likewise, we will need to know the type of arrangements desired once the deceased is returned to the funeral home.
If considering donation, we suggest you carefully read the information shared on the website of the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services (see link below).