Will you donate your organs?

In the Netherlands, you should register via the Donor Register. In all countries, the most important is to tell about your choice to your friends and family! They will support your decision and/or accept the request to donate if you end up in a position to donate without being able to give your consent.

Of course, there are discussions about the lack of organ donors, on one side, and whether donors should receive compensation on the other side. The current system supports voluntary donations without compensations. This calls for discussion and thinking.

Seen on Metafilter this year and previously

In response to shortfalls in organ donation, policy is undergoing a serious rethink in several countries. In Australia, the government has just lifted a ban on animal-to-human transplants. In the UK, the Chief Medical Officer has called for presumed consent, while in Israel a new law gives donor card carriers a legal right to priority treatment if they should require an organ transplant. Many are looking to Spain, which leads the world, having seen the number of deceased donors per million people - a commonly used benchmark - increase from 14 in 1989 when a new system was put in place to 34.2 last year.

If you think that you or your family should get paid for your organs:

[…] Of the episode of the Twilight Zone where a family is given a little button to push. When pressed, someone they “don’t even know” will die and the family will get a million dollars. Arguments ensue, but eventually they press the button. A man shows up to drop off the money and collect the button. The man assures them that the button will now be given to someone they “don’t even know.” Zing!

If you allow organ selling, you generate a market that will encourage harvesting.

If you imagine that you are not a member of the organ pool because you’re middle-class, you’re assuming the wealthy won’t preferentially choose to buy well-fed, healthy organs for transplants.

In a world where white, newborn orphans get adopted first, that’s just naive.

If people are allowed to shop for organs, you’re putting yourself in the store display window right beside the third-world labourer. And you’re pretty tempting - you don’t have HIV, you probably haven’t been exposed to poisons your whole life, you probably haven’t suffered malnutrition or parasitic infection. You’re organs are probably in very good shape compared to 90% of the planet. Furthermore, there’s someone out there who:

  1. Doesn’t care who you are.
  2. Has the money to buy your organs.

Register now, advertise your choice, donate later!