Sunday, March 4, 2012

Organ donation in Britain

The BBC reports on a new report by the British Medical Association: BMA calls for fresh debate on rate of organ donation. It focuses on some of the same issues that have been discussed in the U.S. and elsewhere.

You can find the report here: Building on Progress: Where next for organ donation policy in the UK? (direct link to pdf here).

"This report documents the changes that have taken place since the Organ Donation Taskforce published its report in January 2008. It records the significant improvements that have been made to the infrastructure and the projected 34% increase in donation rates over the four years to April 2012. The report notes, however, that even if the Taskforce’s target of a 50% increase in donation rates by 2013 is achieved, people will still be dying unnecessarily while waiting for an organ.

 "We believe that, as a society, we now need to decide whether we should be satisfied that we have done all we can or whether we should seek to build on what has already been achieved by shifting out attention to additional ways of increasing the number of organ donors.

 "The report examines a range of options that have been suggested for increasing the number of donors including a system of mandated choice, reciprocity, a regulated market or paying the funeral expenses of those who sign up to the Organ Donor Register and subsequently donate organs. The report also explains why we remain convinced that an opt-out system with safeguards is the best option for the UK."

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