Anatomy Bequest Program

The Anatomy Bequest Program at the University of Minnesota is a whole body donation program. Our purpose is to support medical research and education for health professionals by facilitating the donation process.


In light of the current Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) outbreak, the Anatomy Bequest Program staff will be reducing operations and placing a temporary pause on accepting whole body donations effective Tuesday, March 24, 2020 at 8 AM until at least April 21, 2020. The Anatomy Bequest Program will continue to monitor the situation and provide regular updates during this period.

This is an unprecedented situation in our nation. This decision was made in order to comply with the University of Minnesota's recent extended reduced operations plan, which mandates employees to work remotely when possible in order to slow the spread of the virus so as not to overwhelm our medical system. This decision also allows the Anatomy Bequest Program to offer our inventory of personal protective equipment to healthcare providers caring for patients infected with the COVID-19 virus.

A portion of the Anatomy Bequest Program team will still report to work as needed to ensure the respectful and appropriate preservation, storage, tracking, and final disposition of the Anatomy Bequest Program donors currently with us. Other members of our team will be performing administrative functions and will be able available to answer your questions and process requests for donation information.

We are aware of the impact this may have on the community, as we know that people who decide to pre-register to become a whole body donor often make the decision years in advance of their death. In the event that our program has to decline a donation, a member of the Anatomy Bequest Program staff will be available to advise impacted family members on how to make alternative funeral arrangements.

We hope this outbreak will be short-lived. In the meantime, we hope that all of you will remain healthy and safe. Thank you for understanding and grace during this time.

Updated: 04/07/2020

Whole Body Donation Makes a Difference

You can contribute to medical research and education by gifting your remains through the University of Minnesota Medical School’s Anatomy Bequest Program. Whole body donation supports high quality education for future health professionals and continued advancements in medical care through research.

Thinking about donating your body to medical science? Here’s some information to get started exploring this possibility.

Service of Gratitude

We are deeply grateful for the generosity and wisdom of whole body donors and their families. Each year, faculty, staff, and students host a service of gratitude to recognize and honor the individuals who have gifted their remains to the University for the advancement of medical science.  

To view the 2019 Service of Gratitude video, click here.