Deaths Under Investigations

Ensuring all Families have the Option to Consider Donation

Even when the death of a patient may be related to serious criminal conduct (child abuse, domestic violence, homicide, other suspicious circumstances) it is possible to collect and preserve necessary forensic evidence and offer the gift of life through organ and tissue donation.

We work together to ensure all families have the option to consider donation after all necessary forensic information is collected and preserved.

We have a written protocol, the Shared Protocol for Organ Recovery in Deaths Under Investigation to guide us. We follow the written Protocol in every case to ensure we do everything correctly.

Download our Protocol for Organ Recovery
Read the Organ and Tissue Donation Fact Sheet
What Should Hospital Providers Do?
  • Call Gift of Hope

  • Quarantine all blood and tissue specimens

  • Maintain mechanical support until Gift of Hope provides further direction

  • If asked, inform family that Gift of Hope and the Coroner follow a written protocol to determine if and how organ and tissue donation can happen.

What Should Law Enforcement Officers Do?
  • Call Gift of Hope

  • Participate in collaborative discussions with Gift of Hope and the Coroner’s Office to ensure proper collection of forensic evidence

  • If asked, inform family that Gift of Hope and the Coroner follow a written protocol to determine if and how organ and tissue donation can happen.

What Should Gift of Hope Team Members Do?
  • Make sure a copy of the Shared Protocol for Organ Recovery in Deaths Under Investigation is available and follow each step in the Protocol

  • Request the Hospital to quarantine all available blood and tissue samples. If there is a prior admission facility, contact that facility as well

  • Provide the Hospital a copy of the Shared Protocol for Organ Recovery in Deaths Under Investigation for their reference.

  • If asked, inform family that Gift of Hope and the Coroner follow a written protocol to determine if and how organ and tissue donation can happen.

What Should Coroner’s Representatives Do?
  • Call Gift of Hope

  • Participate in collaborative discussions with Gift of Hope and the Coroner’s Office to ensure proper collection of forensic evidence

  • If asked, inform family that Gift of Hope and the Coroner follow a written protocol to determine if and how organ and tissue donation can happen

What Should States Attorneys Do?
  • Call Gift of Hope

  • Participate in collaborative discussions with Gift of Hope and the Coroner’s Office to ensure proper collection and preservation of all forensic evidence

  • If asked, inform family that Gift of Hope and the Coroner follow a written protocol to determine if and how organ and tissue donation can happen.

Gift of Hope has teamed up with LifeGoesOn.com to make it easy to become an organ and tissue donor. Visit www.lifegoeson.com to join the registry today.

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