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Reform of the Human Tissue Act

Petition published by Dr David Nicholl on Jan 23, 2010
91 Signatures 
Target: UK government

Petition Background (Preamble):

Mail on Sunday article http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/worldnews/article-1241931/Bodies-Revealed-exhibition-accused-putting-executed-Chinese-prisoners-show.html

Letter in Daily Telegraph (29/1/2010)
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/comment/letters/7094467/The-Iraq-inquiry-and-the-reluctance-of-politicians-to-heed-legal-advice.html

Hospital Doctor (10/2/2010)
http://www.hospitaldr.co.uk/blogs/our-news/call-for-ban-on-imports-of-tissue-from-suspect-human-corpses

The Observer- 14/2/2010
http://www.guardian.co.uk/theobserver/2010/feb/14/letters-medical-research

The Lancet backs the campaign to change the Human Tissue Act (The Lancet, Volume 375, Issue 9715, Page 612, 20 February 2010)
http://www.thelancet.com/journals/lancet/article/PIIS0140-6736(10)60249-8/fulltext?_eventId=login

Petition:

Today (29/1/2010) sees the final day of an exhibition of plastinated Chinese corpses in Birmingham called “Bodies Revealed”.

The exhibition is organized by a US company, Premier exhibitions, who had a previous show in 2007 blocked by the Russian authorities. In 2008, after a law suit, they were forced to carry a disclaimer for their New York exhibition stating these were “human remains of Chinese citizens or residents which were originally received by the Chinese Bureau of Police. The Chinese Bureau of Police may receive bodies from Chinese prisons. Premier cannot independently verify that the human remains you are viewing are not those of persons who were incarcerated in Chinese prisons”. No such disclaimer, nor even the country of origin, was present at the Birmingham exhibition. It is worth noting that China executes more people than any other country, including for non-violent offences such as tax evasion. Yet, the Human Tissue Authority (HTA) has confirmed that this exhibition is legal as “the consent requirements do not apply” for imported tissue and were satisfied by the origins of the tissue based on an affidavit in Chinese.

We would urge the government to amend the Human Tissue Act so that the rules for informed consent apply equally to imported as well as exported body tissue, especially where tissue has been acquired from a country with a poor human rights record.

The Reform of the Human Tissue Act petition to UK government was written by Dr David Nicholl and is in the category Human Rights at GoPetition. Contact author here. Petition tags: , , ,

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