Donating our organs should be automatic in Canada


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13 comments

  1. Paul Anderson

    An opt-out organ donation system would pair poorly with Bill C-14 (Medical Assistance in Dying). We would soon be hearing that MAiD ought to be presumptively administered. Consent should never be presumed. The public is already generally in favour of organ donation. They just need to be reminded, and reminded again, to opt-in.

    • Ed Weiss

      Paul, I’m not sure why you are trying to connect opt-out organ donation with medical assistance in dying. MAID absolutely requires a person’s consent and cannot be done otherwise. What are you trying to say?

  2. Deirdre Freiheit

    Couldn’t agree more! I have a friend who received a heart transplant. He almost died while waiting. Until such time as we have a better system, I encourage everyone to sign up online to be a donor. It takes two minutes: http://www.beadonor.ca. There is potential for so many of us to give the gift of life.

    • Sherlyn Assam

      Hi Deirdre, my name is Sherlyn and I am journalism student at Carleton University. I am writing an article about organ transplants, and I think you and your friend’s voice would be a strong contribution to the story. Let me know if you are willing and available to talk!

    • Mike

      Was a pacemaker not an option? Are they testing animal hearts in humans yet? See when it comes to supply and demand people do crazy things and we need better options than using people as commodities or it literally turns into one person going and taking the life of another for profits. Very quickly I might add

  3. Elizabetth Hopkins

    I had surgery without informed consent four years ago. I think it was an accident, though I’m not sure. I was listed as an organ donor up until this time, though I’ve since changed it and don’t want anyone doing anything to me without consent. Don’t assume consent.

    • Ron Mara

      @ Elizabeth Hopkins : you are correct, one should not assume consent. But in the current situation we are assuming there is “no- consent” unless someone fills up a form – not sure if that is correct either. Having said that, even in an opt-out scheme, it gives people the option to actually opt out if they do not want to donate. There is no compulsion that everyone must donate against their wishes. The default would be the assumption that everyone is a donor- people can choose not to give if that is their wish.

      Don’t you think that it is sad though that many people would be first in the line-up if they have to receive, and yet would not be willing to donate to help others?

    • Sherlyn Assam

      Hi Elizabeth, my name is Sherlyn Assam and I’m a journalism student at Carleton University. I would like your input for my in-depth class article on organ transplants. Please let me know if you are willing to talk more about your experience!

  4. rick sanchez

    Everybody gets a taste (physicians, OR nurses, transplant programmes, drug companies, hospitals etc) except the patient (donor) . There should be tax credits wrt donations, ie. if I donate to a kidney and am off work/out of commission for 6 wks, I lose earnings, QoL at home etc. another ie. let my next of kin write off my funeral expenses – I submit there will be a significant rise in donations

    • Ron Mara

      @ Rick Sanchez : My concern is that once you monetize organ donations through any mechanism (including tax credits) – you may be going down a slippery slope. In a public healthcare space, where I am hoping I will get an organ donated to me if I need one, the onus is on me to give back as well. Who knows, someone near and dear to me may benefit through a system where we are all donating by default. The opinion in this piece is something worth considering for sure.

  5. Cynthia

    Thank you for sharing your thoughts on our organ donation system! I do agree on the point that we do not make organ donation easy and efficient. However, I also feel that automatic opt-in to donate our organs does not adequately provide an process for informed consent. I believe there needs to be more public awareness of this topic so each of us gives it more thoughts to decide what we want to do.

  6. Sherlyn Assam

    Hi Sneha, this was an interesting read. I am a journalism student at Carleton University, and I am writing an article about organ transplants, and would like to ask you additional questions about your opinion to contribute to the story. Let me know if you are willing and available to talk!

  7. Mike

    It is wrong to assume anyone will take or receive organs. Some people refuse blood and organs and that is their right. There is a thing called informed consent and it took a lot of heart ache to achieve that. It is sad to see so much pushing for harvesting and such little effort being put into creating new organs from the patients own cells.

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