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Body Donation

The decision to make a body donation for health care education is not an easy one. Your donation will help CMCC students reach their goals to treat all patients to the very best of their abilities and to be compassionate and successful members of the health care team. It is a gift that will last a lifetime.

Respect and dignity

The significance of your body donation and the tremendous contribution this makes toward chiropractic education and research is held in the highest regard by all faculty, students and researchers at CMCC. For the privilege granted to them, and in accordance with a tradition of excellence at CMCC, donations are given the respect they deserve and are treated with utmost dignity at all times.

Who can donate?

Almost everyone is potentially eligible to make the gift of their body for donation. While most donations are accepted, CMCC reserves the right to decline any donation. Should a body be unacceptable for anatomical education and research, the next-of-kin or executor must arrange alternative plans with a Funeral Director.

The suitability of the donor is determined prior to the transportation of the body to CMCC. Circumstances which would disqualify a body from donation include, but are not limited to, bodies that have had an autopsy performed, have undergone recent surgery or organ donation (except for eyes), or had certain infectious diseases (HIV/AIDS, hepatitis, MRSA, etc.) There is no upper age limit for the donation of a body.

Cost involved

The cost involved in transporting the body locally – from the place of death to CMCC – will be fully covered by CMCC. Should the death occur outside of the Greater Toronto Area, the estate of the deceased will be requested to assist with any additional transportation costs.

Expenses related to the preparation, cremation and burial are covered by CMCC. Return of the ashes to the family for private burial can be arranged by downloading, filling the Ashes to be Returned form and mailing it to the address given at the bottom of the page.  All expenses incurred for a private burial are the responsibility of the estate of the deceased.

Length of donation

The length of time a donor stays with CMCC is variable. Typically, CMCC retains the body for a period of 18 months to three years. Depending on the needs of the Anatomy Department and the number of donations received, families may be asked for an extension of the donation.

Celebration of Life Memorial Plaque

In 2010, CMCC was approached by the Holtom family, to provide permanent recognition within CMCC to honour those who have made such impactful donations. CMCC is pleased to show its appreciation to those individuals who have helped us in our efforts to produce quality health care practitioners.

Memorial Service

A memorial service is held at the end of each academic year to honour those who have generously donated their bodies. The remains are cremated and the ashes are buried in the CMCC plot at St. James Cemetery in Toronto. If the family wishes, ashes can be returned to them by filling out the Ashes to be Returned form.   Family, friends, students, faculty and staff are all invited to attend the memorial service at St. James Cemetery, where a memorial stone commemorates our donors’ contributions to chiropractic education and research.

How to donate

Once you have made the decision to become a donor, please discuss your decision to donate your body with your next-of-kin, executor, close friend, chiropractor, family doctor or clergy leader. This person will be responsible for carrying out your wishes upon your death, and so they need to be well informed of your intention to donate, and the simple procedures required of them.

It is important to let the Anatomy Department at CMCC know of your decision to donate. The Anatomy Act Part I (completed by donor) or part II (completed by next of kin or person lawfully in possession of the body) Province of Ontario Bequeathal Form is to be used for this purpose. Please fill download, complete and mail a copy to CMCC and keep a copy for personal records. At this time, you may also let us know whether you would like to have your name included on our Celebration of Life donor wall. The Memorial Plaque form is provided for this purpose. The Return of Ashes Form should be retained by you to be completed by your next-of-kin or executor at the time of your death. All forms can be returned to the address at the bottom of this page.


If you have further questions, please see our FAQ page.

At the time of death

Due to the time sensitive nature of the donation process, a traditionally held funeral service for family and friends, with the body present, is not possible. For those families who wish to have a memorial service at the time of death, we recommend a service without the body. As soon as possible, your next-of-kin or executor must contact MacKinnon & Bowes Ltd. at 416 465 7508 or 1 800 268 6736. Their representatives will work in consultation with the Anatomy Department at CMCC to determine whether the body is suitable for donation and will make arrangements for transportation of the body to CMCC. At this time, if The Anatomy Act and Memorial Plaque forms have not been completed by the donor the next-of-kin or executor must fill out Part II of the form, as well as the Return of Ashes form, and send them to the Anatomy Department at CMCC.

Please contact The Department of Anatomy for further information and forms or contact the department at 416 482 2340 ext 221.

CMCC Department of Anatomy
Body Donation Program
6100 Leslie Street
Toronto, ON
M2H 3J1