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Person signing organ donation card

Does the STATE have the right to your body when you die? Can it harvest what it deems it wants, unless you explicitly choose to opt out?

Families would have no legal right to stop dead relatives’ organs being used for transplant if the person has not opted out in advance, under a proposed Welsh law. However, Health Minister Lesley Griffiths said she could not see a situation where doctors took organs without the permission of families. Ministers are asking for views on plans for a “soft opt-out”. If it goes ahead, Wales would be the UK’s first country with the system.

I absolutely reject this notion of the State assuming it can take our organs when we die UNLESS we tell them before hand not to do so. What say you? My wife has an organ-donation card and she has specified what the State can do when she dies. However her view is that if the State moves to the point where it essentially claims the de facto right to harvest organs, she will opt out. I suspect she is not alone. Me? The State can take a hike….I do not like the idea of organ donation at all. My choice.

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9 thoughts on “OPT OUT, OPT IN?

  1. In the context of a growing sense of alienation, impotence and mistrust between government and people; the Police and various government agencies, this is a worrying development.
    How can I be sure that if I opt out I will still receive quality care should I be involved in an accident (as compared to someone who has passively agreed to be an “organ donor”?
    Personally I have already made clear to my surgery my reluctance to go to hospital, because with Asthma/COPD I would be more susceptible to whatever is lurking in unhygienic/dirty wards. Believe me, it doesn’t go down well with some..
    That homosexuals are to be allowed to donate blood on trust that they have stayed celibate for a year, has done nothing to allay my concerns.
    And I am NOT bashing homosexuals as such; I know heterosexuals can be less than responsible. The fact is though the risk of disease is higher from that group, and IMO this is a political decision rather than sound medical advice.

    I think the government should stick to the current arrangement.

  2. Oddly enough and unlike Minister Lesley Griffiths I cannot see a situation not arising where, say for expediency or urgency, doctors will harvest organs without family consent. Once done it will become commonplace.

  3. I am an organ downer and there have been many lives saved and vastly improved because of it. If some folk want to opt out so they can save their liver for The Rapture, or are afraid that Dr. Frankenstein was counting on their aorta or cornea so be it – I presume they have marked out that they would refuse to receive an organ if they become ill……

  4. Agit8ed –

    How can I be sure that if I opt out I will still receive quality care should I be involved in an accident (as compared to someone who has passively agreed to be an “organ donor”?

    It would work the other way. Earlier this year a radio programme I heard (can’t remember the details now) highlighted evidence that organ donors were more likely to be allowed to die.

    Examples are that in triage they would become less of a priority, and that they’d much less likely to be revived. Is it possible? I would be astounded if this wasn’t the case. There’s no doubt that under such a scheme a whole new line of work would open up prioritising down who will be allowed to die because the hospital needs a particular organ.

  5. David – Sure it is their choice (and their right), but spare me the plunder their bodies nonsense. Organ donation is one of the great advances in modern medicine.

    Pete – I suppose that radio program also broadcast War of the Worlds. There is no credible evidence of soem system were organ donors are allowed to die.

  6. I do not like the idea of organ donation at all.

    Does that also include if you are the potential recipient, ie. a doctor recommends a transplant as the best treatment option?

  7. It would work the other way. Earlier this year a radio programme I heard (can’t remember the details now) highlighted evidence that organ donors were more likely to be allowed to die.

    Examples are that in triage they would become less of a priority, and that they’d much less likely to be revived. Is it possible? I would be astounded if this wasn’t the case.

    In a private, for profit hospital I would imagine the financial incentive to enable an expensive transplant operation would be quite strong.

  8. I’m also registered as a ( potential! ) organ donor on my drivers license.

    But I don’t think the government has any right to presume consent or ownership of body parts unless the person has opted out.

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