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News Archive 2012

Thanksgiving Ceremony to be held by the Department of Anatomy & Neuroscience

1 Mar 2012

UCC is holding a Thanksgiving Service in memory of the people who have donated their bodies for medical and dental research.

The Thanksgiving Service for Anatomical Body Donors will be held in the Honan Chapel UCC on Thursday March 15th at 4pm. Bodies have been given to the college for the teaching of anatomy to its medical, dental and science students since 1849. Each year the University accepts about 20 bodies of people from the Munster region who have indicated prior to their death that they wish to donate their bodies for this purpose. This Inaugural Service is unrelated to the final committal or funeral service of any individual but, rather, is intended as an opportunity for the altruistic actions of the donors to be acknowledged. It is non-denominational and members of the congregation do not need to be of any particular religious affiliation or, indeed, hold any religious belief, to attend the Service.

Professor of Anatomy John F. Cryan said: "We are very grateful to those who are generous enough to donate their bodies for medical science and education. Such bequests are essential to our proper functioning within the Medical and other Health Science schools. The body donors’ selfless and public-spirited actions benefit the education of approximately 600 students each year. I am delighted to say, representatives of our students that have benefited from this generosity will take an active part in the Service and acknowledge the gift they have been given by their “first patients”".

The Thanksgiving Service will be attended by approximately 250 people, including many relatives and friends of the deceased, current students, academic, administrative, postgraduate and support staff, senior University representatives, and clergy.

From here on in the Service will be an annual event and important date in the Calender of the College of Medicine & Health at UCC.

Note from the Department of Anatomy & Neuroscience regarding the donation of bodies

Anyone can register to become an anatomical donor. There is no upper age limit for donation, nor does amputation preclude acceptance.

Only the potential donor him/herself can consent to being placed on our database while he/she is fully compos mentis to do so. We do not accept donations by family members without prior consent of the potential donor being registered with the Department of Anatomy & Neuroscience.

It is not until the potential donor is deceased that we can make an assessment of a donation depending wholly on the individual circumstances relating to the death of the donor. Medical conditions that prevent acceptance as a donor include: Hepatitis, HIV, and Creutzfeldt-Jacob disease. Extensive trauma to the body at the time of death, post-mortem, decomposition, or extreme obesity would also make remains unsuitable for anatomical study.

The body usually remains with us for a period of about two years. Burial or cremation then takes place in accordance to the wishes of the donor.

For more information on Anatomical Donations contact the Department of Anatomy & Neuroscience on 021 4902246 or

UCC is holding a Thanksgiving Service in memory of the people who have donated their bodies for medical and dental research.


Cork NeuroScience CNS Centre - Integrating Clinical and Basic Research

Cork NeuroScien floor,