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To suggest people shouldn't be allowed donor organs unless they're registered organ donors themselves?

(233 Posts)
TM08 Mon 08-Oct-12 22:50:30

I had a conversation with my mum the other night, which has led on to me posting this thread.

She thinks that it might be possible to feel pain after death. She doesn't know what happens to our bodies, but she doesn't believe it's the end of us. For this reason, she wants cremated instead of buried, as she wouldn't want to be slowly eaten by worms for years after dying. Lovely.

Because of the pain after death thing, she doesn't want to be an organ donor. I asked "would you be happy to accept an organ if you needed one tomorrow?" and she said yes.

It just got me thinking how unfair this system is. People like my mum can get organs, but aren't willing to donate their own.

AIBU to think that if you are willing to accept an organ, you should be a registered organ donor yourself?

fishybits Tue 09-Oct-12 07:59:18

extending *our lives

stoopid phone operator

Titsalinabumsquash Tue 09-Oct-12 08:05:35

I think anyone that can donate but won't is IBVU but I also understand that until you're in a position of knowing the only thing that will save your loved ones life is an organ from someone who won't need it anymore you can't possibly know how it feels.

I do also think they need to ditch this next of kin making the choice after death rule, if you're on the list you're on the list! So many organs get passed up because a relative is understandably too upset to think about things like donation or they can't stand the thought of their loved one being operated in after death to take an organ even though that same loved one was on the donation list.

sashh Tue 09-Oct-12 08:25:42

What about a 3 year old? They can't sign the forms to be on the donor register.

Organs should go to those eho need them most.

Trills Tue 09-Oct-12 08:27:20


samandi Tue 09-Oct-12 08:31:33

Good lord, what a horrifying thought. I feel sorry for your mother if she genuinely believes that, it must be terrifying. Is there anyone she could speak to?

Re the idea that only organ donors can receive them, I'm not sure how it would work in practice. I do think organ donation should be on an opt out basis rather than opt in though.

BrittaPerry Tue 09-Oct-12 08:33:57

No, the NHS should be unconditional. If something is medically indicated, and affordable, then it should be given to the patient.

forevergreek Tue 09-Oct-12 09:09:32

Obv under 16/18 would be exempt. And if you can't donate for any reason then that's not the same, you could still opt to donate. When they say your blood/ organs / condition mean you can't then fair enough but you still would have opted to donate if at all possible

Death isn't a nice subject, but if your 3 year old was dying and needing a heart just think how grateful you would be if someone was found to be a match. The same if you needed bone marrow to allow you to see your children grow up. Or to let your neighbour/ bin man/ Crazy cat lady to love their lives

UnimaginitiveDadThemedUsername Tue 09-Oct-12 09:10:02

By that logic, we may as well cut anyone out of the NHS if they don't pay income tax.

No. It's not the same thing at all. Pretty much everyone has something in their bodies that could help others after their death because that's what they come with the day they are born.

procrastinor Tue 09-Oct-12 09:21:48

No unimaginativedad many many people don't have organs that are useful. That's partly why getting organs to people is so very difficult. I have only seen one successful harvesting throughout my (admittedly not that long career) but of the small group of people who have agreed to donation many have been told that it isn't possible due to the nature of their relatives death or that they didn't meet criteria. I have in fact seen one donation where at time of operation it was seen that the organs couldn't be used (so very sad as they'd had preliminary matches)

misdee Tue 09-Oct-12 09:52:54

not everyone has organs thatsv are suitable. 7 calls before dh got a good heart.

differentnameforthis Tue 09-Oct-12 10:27:44

I can't donate here (Australia) as I lived in the UK during the Mad cow outbreak.

If I needed an organ, are you seriously saying that I shouldn't get one as I am not a donor?

TM08 Tue 09-Oct-12 10:34:06

Perhaps i should rephrase then.

Only people willing to give organs should get one in return. I just think it's unfair that people who could donate don't, but would be happy to receive one.

jeee Tue 09-Oct-12 10:35:18

My sister was on a liver ward (she died waiting for a liver). One patient had 1 liver transplant and 2 kidney transplants. She and her family were not on the donor register because they thought it was 'disgusting' confused

However, the thing about receiving an organ is that it's not some kind of reward for being a good person, or for holding a donor card. If you fulfil the medical criteria (which tend to be very tight, giving the dearth of organs), then you should go on the transplant list.

NeDeLaMer Tue 09-Oct-12 10:48:28

TM08 - I totally understand where you are coming from, it's the hypocrisy of your Mum's comment, not the 'actual'. Of course it's not practical that only those willing (willing not able) to donate should receive - but in reality that's just not practical to see through. However, I really object to people like your Mum who would take a transplant but wouldn't be willing to donate.

As for the DH who was willing to accept blood for his DD but is not willing to give blood - he needs a damn good talking to!

NeDeLaMer Tue 09-Oct-12 10:50:03

jeee - I'm sorry about your sister sad and very angry at the attitude of those people. My Aunty had 2 kidney transplants, but all of her/our family are on the donor register.

Toastwithatwist Tue 09-Oct-12 11:11:44

I won't donate after death and I won't elaborate why, but I would accept, I would be a live donor if I could, even if it was someone I didn't know, I have my reasons and they are them and that is the end of it

Not trying to start a row, honestly - but I struggle to understand why people wouldn't donate, and statements like this really confuse me. I cannot think of a single reason why I would refuse (I may not be a viable candidate for donation, but that's not my choice to make).

AMumInScotland Tue 09-Oct-12 11:24:42

Some people have religious reasons for not wanting to donate, but that wouldn't necessarily stop them from taking an organ donated by someone whose beliefs were different.

I don't think anything should be put in place to tie up "willingness to donate" with "being eligible to receive". But I would rather we switched to an "opt out" scheme. People who don't want to donate would be able to say so, and families would still be able to refuse at the time of death. But the "norm" would be to donate, instead of it only being the small proportion of people who have thought about it and talked to their family about their wishes who tend to be donors.

If people knew their loved ones had had the chance to opt out, and hadnt, then it would make the decision easier at a difficult time. There'd be so much publicity at the switchover that it would get people thinking and talking about the issues too, which would be a good thing.

meditrina Tue 09-Oct-12 11:36:32

YABU: because it is an important and fundamental principle of NHS that people are treated according to medical need. So if they need a transplant, they go on the list for one and possible matches are decided on medical grounds (how good the match and if tie-break needed how urgent ie near to death without).

OutragedAtThePriceOfFreddos Tue 09-Oct-12 11:43:01

I don't want to donate organs, and that's not for other people to be able to understand or not. I don't have to justify it and I don't give a shit whether others understand or not, my body, my choice.

I donate blood and I'm on the bone marrow register. Is that enough or would I be denied an organ if I needed one? hmm

Toughasoldboots Tue 09-Oct-12 11:46:31

I think that practically and legally anyone who needs an organ must have one. Morally, I can't understand why anyone would take if they needed one but opt out to give ( if eligible to).

Much like the earlier poster who mentioned that her dh won't give blood but their daughter had a blood transfusion. It is relying on the goodwill of others.

I suppose young children would be excluded from this, since they are obviously incapable of giving consent to donate their organs?

Hammy02 Tue 09-Oct-12 11:57:04

I think it is disgusting to be willing to take an organ if you aren't prepared to donate. Unless there are medical reasons why not. I'd love to know what kind of awful religion says it is wrong to give but OK to take. You are basically saying your life is more important than someone else's. People are dying waiting for organs. Horrific.

differentnameforthis Tue 09-Oct-12 13:36:02

But how would I prove that I was willing to donate? I can't carry a card because they reject my applications. I have nothing official that states I would be willing to be a donor & if they did operate this way, everyone would just carry a letter to attest to the fact that they would give, but they can't, even if they wouldn't give if they could.

lashingsofbingeinghere Tue 09-Oct-12 13:50:35

YANBU It may be true people in need of a donated organ would be unfit to donate organs themselves, but tissue donation is another matter here.

Bone, skin, corneas, heart valves and tendons can all be donated after death (ie there is no need for the donor to have been kept ventilated with the heart beating) and donors can be any age so unlikely to have been in peak condition (oldest recorded cornea donor was in her 90s I believe).

I think people who would be prepared to take an organ but are not signed up as organ/tissue donors actually are hypocrites, unless there are medical/lifestyle reasons why they would be excluded.

UnimaginitiveDadThemedUsername Tue 09-Oct-12 14:15:27

No unimaginativedad many many people don't have organs that are useful.

But how many people are actually aware of that?

The point here is that some people expect to get all the benefits of living in a society whilst not being prepared to contribute if the circumstance arrives.

I don't think anyone here would think less of a person who was willing to be a donor but circumstances meant that they ultimately couldn't be.

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