Saturday, March 13, 2010

Experts praise "organs for organ donors" law in Israel

Israel recently enacted a law that gives organs first to registered organ donors. Jacob Lavee, director of the heart transplant unit at Israel's Sheba Medical Center, says the law "will rectify the unfairness of the situation where people who are unwilling to donate wait in the same line as those who are willing."

The same Associated Press story reports other positive reactions to the law:

Writing in the December issue of The Lancet, the British medical journal, Dr. Paolo Bruzzone of Sapienza University in Rome said... "giving holders of donor cards priority in organ allocation sounds more acceptable than the introduction of organ conscription or financial incentives for organ donation."

Luc Noel, coordinator of clinical procedures at the World Health Organization in Geneva, praised the Israeli law for its educational value and for introducing a "community spirit" to the field of organ donations. "The bottom line here is doing to others as you would like others to do to you and that is where the community has a role," he told The Associated Press.

Arthur Caplan, director of the Center for Bioethics at the University of Pennsylvania, said the Israeli measure was ethically sound — he called it "reciprocal altruism" that would benefit society as a whole.

In the United States, registered organ donors can get preferred access to donated organs by joining LifeSharers.

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