Acquisition of Organs

F. M. Kamm

in Morality, Mortality Volume I: Death and Whom to Save From It

Published in print July 1998 | ISBN: 9780195119114
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780199872244 | DOI:

Series: Oxford Ethics Series

 Acquisition of Organs

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Deals with the problem of the acquisition and distribution of organs for transplantation and allows the application of the foregoing theoretical discussion of saving lives and relevant/irrelevant utilities. As an aid to dealing with categories that are of current concern to the medical community, Ch. 11 starts with a summary of the recommendations of the US Task Force on Organ Transplantation on acquisition and distribution of organs, and discusses and criticizes the total‐brain‐death criterion for death. The next section of the chapter discusses the role of informed consent of the original organ owner and his family in relation to the State in the task of acquiring organs, as well as the moral possibility of sale, trading, and taking of organs. The last section of the chapter considers the morality of more controversial proposals for acquiring organs: ‘donation’ from foetuses, donation from live donors where there is significant risk to the donor, and (the most radical) killing some persons for the sake of acquiring organs for others.

Keywords: informed consent of donor; informed consent of family; irrelevant utilities; killing for organ acquisition; morality; organ acquisition; organ distribution; organ donation from foetuses; organ donation from live donors; organ sale; organ taking; organ trading; relevant utilities; saving lives; total‐brain‐death criterion for death; transplantation; US Task Force on Organ Transplantation

Chapter.  18533 words. 

Subjects: Moral Philosophy

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