There are religious, cultural and humanitarian benefits offered by less invasive autopsies and a report from a group of NHS experts, chaired by colleagues at the University of Leicester, explores the potential use of this evolving technology. It lays out some of the fundamental issues and describes what steps are recommended for the NHS so as to offer this service in a safe, reliable and clinically evidenced way.
The key recommendation from the work described in the report, is that the introduction of a non-invasive alternative to the current invasive autopsy is realistic. If our multi-ethnic, multi-cultural society is increasingly unwilling to accept conventional autopsy, consideration by the NHS must be given to the provision of a non-invasive autopsy service that meets both the expectations of the public and provides the most reliable information possible. The Department of Health welcomes this report and will consider its recommendations.