Nearly one in three bags containing human body parts taken during healthcare procedures have leaked on their way to disposal, a study at the Auckland City Hospital suggests.
Auckland District Health Board disposed of more than 7600 items of body tissue last year, such as tonsils, breast tissue, placentas and appendixes.
Tissue is returned to the patient if they ask for it; otherwise it is placed in a dedicated freezer at the health board’s LabPLUS laboratory at the hospital. A funeral director takes it to the Mangere Lawn Cemetery and Crematorium where, after cremation, the ashes are scattered in the grounds of the crematorium.
Springing a leak
- 1 in three bags containing human body parts have leaked on their way to disposal
- 7600 items of body tissue disposed of last year
- 50 placentas were sent from a hospital ward for cremation
- 30 per cent of the bagged placentas were found to have leaked blood or amniotic fluid
Presently, I cannot locate and substantive peer-reviewed or other formal publication of the findings so for now, thanks are due to The New Zealand Herald for this synopsis.