Organ Donor Debate

Topics: Organ donation, Organ transplant, Legal death Pages: 4 (1535 words) Published: October 9, 2005
National Organ Donor Registry
Each day, about 74 people receive an organ transplant. However, 17 people die each day waiting for transplants that can't take place because of the shortage of donated organs. We propose the development of a national incentive-based Advance-Directive Organ Registry, in which all adults are encouraged to register their advance directive regarding organ donations. Those individuals agreeing to permit usable organs to be taken at the time of death would receive priority for organs generated by the program, should a transplant become necessary when there is a shortage of organs (Better Health Information, 2004). The proposed system would allow individuals to exercise autonomy in deciding whether or not to participate. We believe that in the event of a shortage of organs, it is reasonable that priority be given to those willing to advance the public good by participating in the responsibility for organ donation (Carolyn, 2003). People die today because of a shortage of organs. By increasing the supply, the proposed system decreases the total number of people who die. The proposed system is firmly founded on the principles of patient autonomy, beneficence, and justice. Autonomy is served by the voluntary registration of an advance directive that will likely be honored. The welfare of those who need transplants is served by increasing the supply of cadaver donor organs, while reducing the need for living organ donation, with its potential risks as well as ethical and psychological conflicts advances the welfare of their family members. Justice is also served when more persons who need transplants get them (Carolyn, 2003). A problem with the current system by which donor organs are rationed is that it takes no account of, indeed it encourages, the 'free rider': the individual who hopes to benefit from the cooperation of others even though he does not himself contribute to the socially desired end....
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