Ongoing patient storage costs are all paid from the Patient Care Fund (PCF). This fund is designed and intended to last indefinitely. A portion of the Funding from every Service is put into the the PCF as follows:
$18,000 for cephalon (head, see Terminology)
$9,000 for braincase
$5,000 for brain-only preservation
The amounts in this fund are grouped together for all patients rather than tracked separately. Some of this money is kept as cash, and some of it is invested. The PCF is used to pay for storage costs, including liquid nitrogen, dewars, and rented floor space.
The following expenses related to storage are paid from the PCF
-Liquid nitrogen, only the portion used for long-term storage
-Leased space in storage vault
-Dewars and freezers, both new and replacement
The cost of liquid nitrogen may go up dramatically. The current low cost is due to the fact that liquid nitrogen is a byproduct of the manufacture of liquid oxygen. Cheaper methods of oxygen extraction may eventually result in much higher prices for liquid nitrogen.
The mass of tissue being stored is one way of comparing storage costs, although it artificially overemphasizes variable costs. In the discussion that follows, we will use the following averages:
150 lbs, mass of entire body
12 lbs, mass of cephalon
6 lbs, mass of braincase
3 lbs, human brain
Amounts that Oregon Cryonics puts into PCF:
$18,000 cephalon = $1,500 / lb
$9,000 braincase only = $1,500 / lb
$5,000 brain only = $1,667 / lb
Whole body would require over $225k, using $1,500 / lb, so it's too financially risky to offer.
Comparison to Alcor:
Alcor has never once made a withdrawal from the Patient Care Trust (PCT) investments. The PCT has also been supplemented by members who were overfunded.
Amounts that Alcor puts into PCT:
$115,000 whole body = $767 / lb
$25,000 neuro (cephalon) = $2,083 / lb
The whole body amount is insufficient and results in the neuro patients subsidizing the whole body patients.
Comparison to Cryonics Institute (CI):
The funding levels required by CI are intentionally kept as low as possible in order to serve more people. Patient care money is freely mingled with the general funds. They don't have enough safety margin for certain risks, and this model only works because there is a constant influx of new patients and because there are only two employees. This level of funding is dangerously low and is likely to result in future financial troubles for CI, especially as new buildings are needed.
Amount that CI sets aside:
$15,000 whole body = $100 / lb
The amount we set aside in the PCF is similar to Alcor and more than 15 times as much as CI. We feel that this is a reasonable funding level which has a significant margin of safety.