Journal Article

The question of organ procurement: beyond charity

Henri Kreis

in Nephrology Dialysis Transplantation

Published on behalf of European Renal Association - European Dialysis and Transplant Assoc

Volume 20, issue 7, pages 1303-1306
Published in print July 2005 | ISSN: 0931-0509
Published online May 2005 | e-ISSN: 1460-2385 | DOI:
The question of organ procurement: beyond charity

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Over the past 15 years, the shortage of organs for transplantation has worsened. This has forced clinicians to review alternative approaches to organ procurement. These new approaches, however, may have serious implications both for patients and for society as a whole. Ever since the first cadaver organs were used for transplantation, organ procurement has relied on the altruism and goodwill of donors. It now appears that this 40-year-old policy is proving unsuccessful. In order to increase the availability of suitable organs and allow cadaver organ transplantation to continue, it is time to consider new strategies other than donation. Among all the potential methods of organ procurement, including donation, abandonment, sale and societal appropriation, only the latter has never been ethically discussed or implemented. This article considers a variant of this approach defined as ‘conditional societal appropriation’ as an ethically acceptable possibility. It has the potential to become the principle method for obtaining the necessary organs for transplantation in the near future.

Keywords: donation; ethics; organ procurement

Journal Article.  3030 words. 

Subjects: Nephrology

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