Thursday, January 16, 2014

Organ donor registration in Israel

Judd Kessler and I just got this email from Jacob Lavee (about whom I've written before), with good news that he kindly gave me permission to post:

Dear Al and Judd,

Just a short note to let you know that the Israeli Minister of Health has adopted this week my recommendation to establish by law the modified mandated choice model based upon your work, whereby the issuing or renewal of an ID, passport or driving license will be conditional upon answering the question of becoming a registered donor to which only a positive answer will be given as an option or else the “Continue” button will be selected. It seems that, contrary to my previous worries, the entire registration for these documents is currently being done online and therefore there should be no technical issues to implement this model.

Thank you guys for providing the proof of concept which I cited to the ministerial committee.

This model will be added upon the prioritization model, which is already implemented by law.


The work Jay is referring to is a paper, currently out for review at a journal that doesn't like prepublication on the web, "Don’t Take ‘No’ For An Answer: An experiment with actual organ donor registrations," which finds, in a study of the online MA state organ donor registry, that requiring potential donors to choose either "yes" or "no" when asked if they wish to be on the donor registry does not increase registrations, and seems likely to reduce the rate of donations by next of kin when the deceased is unregistered.

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