The current Coronavirus disease (Covid-19) pandemic has spread to about 220 countries globally and has resulted in a significant number of deaths globally. Infections are still on the rise, and the impact on the global death rate could be devastating. There are fears over the likely impact of many deaths on body sourcing and handling of cadavers for teaching and research. Historically, epidemics come with several challenges and have often led to some negligence of ethical practices and health and safety regulations associated with body sourcing and handling.
Materials and Methods
A non-systematic search strategy was utilized for this traditional review. Peer‐reviewed English language articles published online through 25 November 2020 were identified by searching an expanded database list (Google Scholar, Scopus®, Embase®, Medline®, Global Health, CINAHL, Web of Science, and PubMed®) using the keywords in our study - body sourcing, body handling, and Covid-19. Some specific key public health institutions, professional organizations, government databases, and international and local online newspaper webpages were also accessed for relevant information for inclusion in this study. All articles emerging from this search were considered for this study. The abstracts of the search results were reviewed for relevance and inclusion in the study.
We have highlighted some emerging problems concerning body handling and sourcing caused by the Covid-19 pandemic, focusing on Africa and Nigeria in particular. These problems include a higher risk of coronavirus exposure for body handlers, shortage of cadavers for teaching and learning, a lack of standard regulations leading to unethical body sourcing and handling, and a lack of monitoring and collaboration needed for a well-coordinated Covid-19 pandemic response strategy.
The issues highlighted in this study are emerging, and useful recommendations for policymaking geared towards prevention or curtailing these emerging issues are put forward in this study. Rapt attention should be paid to these to avoid destroying the previous gains made in anatomical ethical practices.