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This photo taken on Thursday, April 24, 2014, shows the children's hospital wing of the University of Mississippi Medical Center, left, and the neighboring Methodist Rehabilitation Center in Jackson, Miss. The two centers who will merge some functions under an agreement approved Thursday by higher education officials. The changes will take effect in stages over several years, and the two organizations will remain separate overall. (AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis)

7,000 bodies could be buried on the University of Mississippi Medical Center campus


Approximately 7,000 bodies might be buried on the campus of the University of Mississippi Medical Center, FOX news reports.

According to officials, the bodies on the premises are those of former patients who were housed at Mississippi's first mental institution. An underground radar sweep revealed coffins buried in a 20-acre stretch across the campus.  

So what to do with 7,000 bodies? Well, that's a little tricky. 

The Clarion-Ledger reported on Saturday that exhuming and reburying each body could cost up to $3,000, meaning that exhuming and reburying every body would cost upwards of $21 million. 

The school is looking for ways to bring costs down. 

The school is also investigating the possibility of using the remains in its studies (it is a medical center after all). Officials are thinking about placing a monument to honor the dead, and also opening up where the remains can be viewed and studied. 

“It would be a unique resource for Mississippi,” Molly Zuckerman, an anthropology professor at the school, said to The Clarion-Ledger. “It would make Mississippi a national center on historical records relating to health in the pre-modern period, particularly those being institutionalized.”

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