Anatomy Act

Link to law: http://www.moj.gov.jm/laws/anatomy-act
Published: 1949-09-29

THE ANATOMY ACT

ARRANGEMENT OF SECTIONS

Short title.

Interpretation.

Establishment of schools of anatomy.

Licences to practise anatomy.

Appointment of lnspectors of schools of anatomy.

lnspectors to. make returns.

Inspectors to inspect schools.

Persons having lawful custody of bodies may permit anatomical
examination.

Persons directing anatomical examinations after their death.

Removal of bodies for anatomical examination, and provision
for burial.

Anatomical examination to be carried on only at authorized
places.

Persons practising anatomy to do so in orderly and decent
manner.

Act not to prohibit post mortem examination.

Post mortem examinations.

Offences.

Regulations.

Penalties in regulations.

Power of governors, teachers, etc., of schools to make rules.

Minister may amend monetary penalties.

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ANATOMY 3

THE ANATOMY ACT Cap. I I.
Acts

3rd Sch.,
[29th September, 1949.1 12 of 1972

1. This Act may be cited as the Anatomy Act.

2. In this Act-

s. s,
7 of 201 1

Sc h.
Short title.

Interpreta-
tion.

"anatomy" means human anatomy;

"body" means a dead human body;

"teacher of medicine" means and includes any person who
is employed or engaged as a professor or teacher of
anatomy, pathology, medicine, surgery or obstetrics in
any school of anatomy established under this Act.

3. The Minister may from time to time authorize the
ment of

establishment of schools of anatomy where the study and schoo~sof
practice of anatomy may be carried out. anatomy.

4 . 4 1 ) The Minister may grant a licence to practise ma- Licences to
tomy to any person who is appointed to a school of anatomy
established under this Act as a teacher of medicine in such
school, or to any student attending any such school, on appli-
cation from any such person for such purpose, countersigned by
two Justices residing at or nearest the place where such person
resides, certifying to their knowledge or belief that the person
so applying is about to carry on the practice of anatomy.

(2) No person shall receive or have in his possession
for anatomical examination, or for examination anatomi-
cally, any body, unless he is the holder of a licence under
subsection (1).

(3) Every such licence shall state the school at which
it shall be lawful for the licensee to practise anatomy.

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ANA TOMY 4

Appointment
of lnspectors
of schools of
anatomy.
421 1969
3rd Sch.

lnspectors
to make
returns.

lnspectors
to inspect
schools.

Persons
having
lawful
custody of
bodies may
permit
' anatomical

examination

5.--(1) The Minister may from time to time appoint one or
more inspectors for every such school, and direct in what man-
ner any such Inspector shall transact the duties of his office.

(2). Every such Inspector shall continue in office for
one year, or until he is removed by the Minister, or until
some other person is appointed in his place. .

(3) As often as m y such Inspector dies or is removed
from office, or neglects or refuses or becomes unable to act,
the Minister may appoint another person to be Inspector
in his stead.

6. Every Inspector of a school of anatomy shall' make a
quarterly return to the Minister of every body which during the
preceding lquarter has been removed for anatomical examination
to such school, or which may have been removed to any other
place under the provisions of section 11, distinguishing the sex
and, as f& as is known at the time, the name and age of each
person whose body was so removed & aforesaid.

7. The Inspector may visit and inspect at any time the
school of anatomy for which he is appointed Inspector.

8.--(1), Any person having l a h l possession of a body and
not being an undertaker or otheraperson entrusted with the
body for the purpose'only of interment, may permit the body to
undergo anatomical examination, unless to the knowledge of
such first-mentioned person the .deceased has expressed his
desire, either inlwriting at any time during his life or verbally
in .the presence of two or more witnesses during the illness
whereof he died, that his body after death should not undergo
such examination, or unless the surviving husband or wife; or
any child of the deceased requires the body to be interred
without such'examination. I .

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ANA TOM Y

(2) Without prejudice to the generality of the fore-
going provision it is hereby de~larsd that for the purposes
of this Act the following persons shall be persons having
the lawful possession of bodies as herein mentioned, that
is to say-

(a) the Senior Medical Officer ~f apy hospital (includ-
ing Public Psychiatric H~apital) and the Superin-
tendent of any prison, in respect of the body of any
person who dies in such hospital or prison;

(b) the keeper of any alms-house or other public estab-
lishment wherein destitute persons are hawed, in
respect of the body of any person wha dies therein.

9. If any person, either in writing at any time during his life
or verbally in the presence af two or more witnesses during the
illness whereof he died, directs that his body after death be
examined anatomically, or nominates any person by this Act
licensed to practise anatomy to make such examination, and if
before the burial of the body such direction or nomination iq
made known to the person having lawful possession therqaf,
then such last-mentioned person shall direct such examinadsn
to be made, and in case of any such nomination as aforesaid
shall request the person nominated to make such examination,
unless the surviving husband or wife of the deceased, or his
nearest known relative, or any one or more of such relatives
being of kin in the same degree, require the body to be interred
without such examination.

lo.-+) Every body which is removed for anatomical
examination under this Act shall before such removal be
placed in a decent coffin or shell and shall be removed therein.

(2) In no case shall any body be examined anatomi-
cally until after one week from the time of death, nor until

Persons
directing
anatomical
examina-
tions after
their death.

Removal of
bodies for
anatomical
examination,
and provision
for burial.

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after twenty-four hours' notice has been given to an Inspector
of a school of anatomy of the intention so to examine the body,
so, however, that nothing in this subsection shall be construed
to prevent or delay the embalming of any body with a view to
its subsequent anatomical examination.

(3) All human remains resulting from the anatomi-
cal examination of any body shall be buried or cremated in
accordance with the written instructions of an Inspector of
a school of anatomy.

(4) A register shall be maintained in every school of
anatomy, by or under the supervision of the senior teacher
thereof, wherein is recorded the date of reception, the place
from which received, the sex, and, as far as is known at the
time, the name and age of every person whose body has
undergone anatomical examination, and the date of burial
or cremation of such body.

(5) In the month of November in each year the
senior teacher of a school of anatomy at which he holds his
appointment shall cause to be sent to the Inspector or
Inspectors of such school a return specifying the date when
and the place from which received, the sex, and, as far as
is known at the time the name and age of every person
whose body has undergone anatomical examination ,during
the year, and the date of burial or cremation of such body.

11 .--( 1) No person shall-
examination
to be carried
on only at (a) carry on or teach anatomy by means of the dis-
authorized
places. section of, or demonstration upon, any body;

(b) receive or possess any body for anatomical
examination; or

(c) examine anatomically any body,

at any place except a school of anatomy established for that
purpose under section 3.

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ANATOMY 7

(2) Nothing in this section shall prevent any per-
son, being the holder of a licence under section 4, who
obtains the permission in writing of an Inspector for that
purpose, and also the permission of the governors, teachers,
or other proper authorities of the school at which he is
licensed to practise anatomy, from removing any body or
portion of a body to such place as the Inspector deems fit
for the purpose of teaching or studying anatomy, upon such
terms and conditions as the Inspector and authorities of
such school, in their uncontrolled discretion, think fit.

12. All persons who carry on and practise anatomy shall ~ m o w
do so in such a way as to avoid unnecessary mutilation of a n a - y ~
any body that they may be examining anatomically, and $:gmd
shall conduct such examination in an orderly, quiet, and z .
decent manner; and it shall be lawful, in addition to the
penalties hereinafter provided, to deprive any person of
his licence who offends against the provisions of this section
or any of the provisions of this Act.

practising

13. Nothing in this Act shall be construed to extend to ~ ~ i n o t t o
or to prohibit any post mortem examination of any body
required or directed to be made by any competent legal examination.
authority.

prohibit

14.-(1) Without prejudice to section 13, the foregoing Posrmorrern
examina- provisions of this Act shall not be construed as applying tions.

to any posi mortem examination carried out for the purpose
of establishing or confirming the cause of death or of
investigating the existence or nature of abnormal conditions.

(2) No posi moriem examination shall be carried
out otherwise than by or in accordance with the instructions
of a registered medical practitioner, and no posr mortem
examination which is not directed or requested by the
Coroner or any other competent legal authority shall be

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8 ANATOMY

carried out without the authority of the person 1awfulIy in
possession of the body.

(3) The person lawfully in possession of the body
may authorize the carrying out of a post mortem examina-
tion if, having made such reasonable enquiry as may be
practicable, he has no reason to be l ieve

(a) that the deceased had expressed an objection to
the carrying out of a post mortem examination of
his body, and had not withdrawn it; or

(6) that the surviving spouse or the nearest other sur-
viving relative of the deceased objects to the carry-
ing out of such post mortem examination.

(4) Where a person has reason to believe that an
inquest may be required to be held on any body or that a
post mortem examination of any body may be requued
by the Coroner, he shall not, except with the consent of
the Coroner-

(a) give an authority under this section for a post
mortem examination; or

(b) act on such authority given by any other person.

(5) No authority shall be given under this section for
a post mortem examination of any body by a person en-
trusted with the body for the purpose only of its interment
or cremation or custody prior thereto.

(6) In the case of a body lying in a hospital, nursing
home or other institution, any authority under this section
for a post mortem examination may be given on behalf of
the person having the control and management thereof by
any officer or person designated for that purpose by the
first-mentioned.

(7) In this section “relative” includes-
(a) a relative by marriage;

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(b) in relation to an illegitimate child, the parents of the
child.

15. Every person who contravenes the provisions of this offences
Act shall be guilty of an offence and on summary conviction
before a Resident Magistrate be liable to a fine not exceeding
five hundred thousand dollars or to imprisonment for a term not 71201 I
exceeding six months. S C ~ .

16. The Minister may make regulations for carrying into Regulations.
execution the objects of this Act either generally or in
relation to any particular case.

16A. Notwithstanding section 29(b) of the Interpretation Act, Penalties in
regulations made under section 16 may provide in respect of a regulations.

7/20] 1 breach of any of the provisions thereof for the imposition of sch,
penalties on summary conviction in a Resident Magistrate's
Court of a fine not exceeding one million dollars or imprison-
ment for a term not exceeding twelve months or both such fine
and imprisonment.

1 7 . - ( 1 ) The governing authorities of any authorized Powerof
school of anatomy may from time to time, with the approval of governors, teachers.
the Minister, make rules enabling the study and practice of etc..of

schools to anatomy to be properly carried out, and may impose a fine not make rules,
exceeding one hundred thousand dollars for the breach 7 n o l l
thereof. Sch.

(2) All such rules shall fix a date on which the same
shall come into force, and upon the date so fixed and after their
publication in the Gazette, such rules shall be in force in the
school to which the same relate.

18. The Minister may, by order subject to affirmative Minister
resolution, amend the monetary penalties specified in 'this ::::Trd
Act. penalties.

7\20] 1
Sch.

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