HM Inspector of Anatomy for Scotland: annual report April 2019 - March 2021

From: Scottish Government
Published: Thu Jan 27 2022

Annual report, written by Professor Gordon Findlater, Her Majesty's Inspector of Anatomy for Scotland, providing a resume of duties undertaken in the role during the period April 2019 to March 2021.


The remit of Her Majesty's Inspector of Anatomy is laid out in Section 9, sub-section 2 of the Anatomy Act 1984 as Amended by the Human Tissue (Scotland) Act 2006 and states:

An inspector shall be appointed -

  • to advise the ministers on the exercise of his functions under this Act;
  • to inspect premises in respect of which licenses are sought under Section 3(1) of the Act in order to ascertain whether the premises are suitable;
  • to examine applications for licenses under the Act in order to ascertain whether the applicants are suitable;
  • to inspect premises, in order to ascertain whether any offence has been or is being committed under Section 11(1) or (2) or against regulations under Section 8 (as mentioned in Section 11 (4)).


The last inspection report covered the period August 2018 - October 2019. However, in order to standardise the period over which each report covers, it was decided to make the annual report run from the 1st April - 31st March for any particular year. This would enable data to be compared from one year to the next.

Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, no in-person annual inspections could be carried out for the period 1st April 2019 - 31st March 2020 and consequently no report submitted. Therefore, the brief overlap between this report and the previous report (during April 2019 - October 2019) is acknowledged, and has been used to adjust the timing of these reports to an April - March cycle.

Additionally, as restrictions were still in place for the greater part of 1st April 2020 - 31st March 2021, it was decided to carry out a significantly reduced inspection of all licensed areas to cover the entire period from 1st April 2019 - 31st March 2021. This was undertaken during May/June 2021 just as restrictions were starting to ease.

In the past, an inspection involved meeting numerous members of staff, a walk around the licensed area and the checking of records against material in storage. On this occasion it only involved the Head of Department plus the minimum number of key staff, however, it did not involve a walk around any of the licensed areas.

In normal circumstances, there are 10 licensed areas to be inspected, these being:

  • Department of Anatomy, University of Aberdeen
  • Dundee:
    • Centre of Anatomy and Human Identification (CAHID), University of Dundee
    • Dundee Institute for Healthcare Simulation Surgical Skills Centre (DIHS), Ninewells Hospital
    • Institute for Medical Science and Technology (IMSaT), Ninewells Hospital
    • ENT Temporal Bone Laboratory, Ninewells Hospital
  • Department of Anatomy, University of Edinburgh
  • Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh (RCSE)
  • Department of Anatomy, University of Glasgow
  • Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Glasgow (RCPSG)
  • Department of Anatomy, University of St Andrews

Click here for the full press release

Company: Scottish Government

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