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NFDA and AATB Share Updated Best Practices for Cooperation Between Tissue Banks and Funeral Homes

For Immediate Release: March 10, 2014

Brookfield, Wis. – The National Funeral Directors Association (NFDA) and the American Association of Tissue Banks (AATB) have released updated guidelines to strengthen the relationship between donation professionals and funeral directors as they work together to honor the wishes of the decedent and serve families.

nfdawebMore than 10 years ago, representatives from NFDA and the AATB released a set of best practices involving organ and tissue donation. This document clarified roles and helped both professions better serve families.

"The original document served our respective members well," said Frank Wilton, CEO of the AATB. "However, after more than 10 years, it was time to revisit the document so that we could explore how each association could further educate its respective members and better serve donor families. We are proud to share these new guidelines with our members and encourage mutual support funeral professionals in their community."

aatbThe new document, Best Practices for Cooperation Among Tissue Banks and Funeral Service Professionals, contains important changes that will help improve the working relationship between donation professionals and funeral directors. Topics covered include: notification, disclosure, reimbursement, communication/education and support.

"For some families, donating a loved one's tissues or organs helps them heal and find something positive in the midst of their grief," said NFDA President Robert L. "Robby" Bates, CFSP, CCO. "We encourage our members to do all that they can to work with local recovery agencies to support a family's decision to donate. The updated best practices document will serve as an important tool in forming stronger relationships with donation professionals."

The updated Best Practices for Cooperation Among Tissue Banks and Funeral Service Professionals document can be found on both the NFDA (www.nfda.org) and AATB websites (www.aatb.org). Bates and Wilton encourage their respective members to download the document and evaluate how they can put the recommendations contained in the document into practice in their organization.

About the National Funeral Directors Association – www.nfda.org

NFDA is the world's leading and largest funeral service association, serving 19,700 individual members who represent more than 10,000 funeral homes in the United States and 39 countries around the world. NFDA is the trusted leader, beacon for ethics and the strongest advocate for the profession. NFDA is the association of choice because it offers funeral professionals comprehensive educational resources, tools to manage successful businesses, guidance to become pillars in their communities and the expertise to foster future generations of funeral professionals. NFDA is headquartered in Brookfield, Wis., and has an office in Washington, D.C.

About the American Association of Tissue Banks – www.aatb.org

The American Association of Tissue Banks (AATB) -- a professional, non-profit, scientific and educational organization -- is the only national tissue banking organization in the United States. Founded in 1976, the AATB is dedicated to improving and saving lives by promoting and advancing the safety, quality and availability of donated human tissue. To fulfill that mission, the AATB publishes standards, accredits tissue banks and certifies personnel.

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Contact:
NFDA: Jessica Koth, 262-814-1536, jkoth@nfda.org
AATB: Sarah Gray, 703-229-1031, grays@aatb.org

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