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Articles on Organ donation

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We love the NHS but maybe we love life more. PA/Dave Thompson

Jumping the organ queue questions some core principles

Giving priority for transplants to people who have joined the organ donor register (ODR) isn’t a new idea and is already happening in countries such as Israel and Singapore. In Israel, where a points-based…
Matters of the heart … the ethics of organs aren’t simple. Charlotte Astrid

The ethics of opt out organs

Legend has is that the first human transplant took place in the 3rd century AD. The “lucky” recipient was said to be a sacristian called Justinian who received a donated leg from a recently demised Ethiopian…
There could be good moral reasons to reject an opt-out organ donation system, but we’d better be clear about what they are. Shutterstock

Opt-out organ donation in Wales: a model for Australia?

The National Assembly of Wales has legislated to introduce an “opt-out” system for human organ and tissue transplantation, which will come into effect in 2015. In doing so, Wales joins a host of other…
The proposals are aimed at increasing the gift of organ donation. asenat29/Flickr

New proposals to increase donation rates may go too far

The continuing shortfall of organs available for transplantation has recently prompted a radical rethink of current end-of-life practices in the United Kingdom. The British Medical Association (BMA) has…
Even if the potential donor is registered with the Australian Organ Donor Register, the family may still veto donation. Flickr/cabbit

Organ donation boost requires action, not just talk

Yesterday marked the beginning of DonateLife Week, in which Australia’s Organ and Tissue Authority ramps up efforts to promote organ and tissue donation with a week-long media blitz and program of public…
The thin transparent tissue that forms the front window of the eye is the part that’s transplanted. Flickr/Fabio

Cornea donation hampered by the cultural importance of eyes

Patients with certain diseases of the eye can have their sight improved with a corneal transplant. But as with many organs, there are not enough corneas available for transplantation and this is partly…
Tont-Filippini’s claims could arose fears in the community and prompt people to reject organ donation. Melvin Es

Dead yet? Science, scaremongering and organ donation

In his new book, Catholic bioethicist Nicholas Tonti-Filippini attempts to portray the surgeons involved in organ donation as modern-day grave robbers. As described in a recent article in The Age, Professor…
Transparency in donation processes gives families confidence about giving tissue and organs. Senior couple talking to doctor photo from

Explainer: what is tissue donation?

Every year a number of grieving families will be asked to donate tissue following the death of a relative. The consequences of their decision have implications for patient’s awaiting transplantation, and…
Around 11,000 organs are bought or sold around the world each year. NDNG

Action to stop thriving global organ trade must start at home

The global organ transplant market appears to have reached a new low this week, with reports in The Guardian that one organ is sold every hour somewhere in the world. This follows a Chinese media expos…
World Health Organisation data suggests less than 10% of the world’s transplantation need is currently met. AAP

Facebook organ donation tool could save thousands of lives

Facebook has introduced a new tool allowing users in Australia to display their organ donation status to their friends, following the introduction of the initiative in the United States and the United…
How do we encourage more Australians to become live kidney donors? CarbonNYC

For love, not money: kidney exchange encourages social contract

Many readers will have seen advertisements encouraging people to talk to their loved ones about organ donation. This is part of the government’s latest set of initiatives to increase Australia’s organ…
Failure to understand Australia’s low organ donation rates will impede attempts to raise these rates and lead to the death of more people awaiting organs. AAP

Five myths about organ donation in Australia

Australia has some of the world’s highest organ transplant success rates, but, for almost two decades, our deceased organ donation rates have been among the lowest in the developed world. In other words…
Families need to discuss organ donations so they don’t withdraw consent after death. Muffet/Flickr

Free funerals for organ donors: are donation incentives unethical?

The Nuffield Council on Bioethics in the United Kingdom has suggested a scheme to gauge support for the idea of government funding for funerals of people who donate their organs. The recommendation follows…

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