web analytics
September 2, 2015 / 18 Elul, 5775
At a Glance
Sections
Sponsored Post


New Organ Transplant Guidelines Raise Ethical Questions


The new guidelines would do away with a specific amount of time that transplant surgeons must wait to declare cardiac death, leaving that determination to the doctors on a case-by-case basis.

Gail Van Norman, who is a bioethicist at the University of Washington, said that according to the new UNOS guidelines, “every hospital in America can now develop its own definition of ‘dead,’ and that is profoundly disturbing. . . . We are, it seems, admitting that we are willing to take the chance of procuring organs from someone who is not dead yet.”

Those who support the changes in the transplant rules claim that they are simply catching up with the current state of medical knowledge and practice. They also argue that the new guidelines help to satisfy the wishes of those do who want to donate their organs after their deaths.

“The ultimate goal is to facilitate the dying wishes of patients who wish to be donors and save the lives of the 112,000-plus patients who are in need,” said Charles Alexander, the immediate past president of UNOS. “We are always very aware of our public trust.”

However, opinion within the medical community on the changes in transplant rules is divided. Robert Veatch, a Georgetown University bioethicist, who serves on the separate, 31-member UNOS ethics committee, says that at a recent committee meeting in Chicago, there was an emotional discussion over whether the medical state of DCD patients really should be considered “irreversible.” He called the debate, “a remarkably heated battle.”

Michael A. Grodin, a professor of health law, bioethics and human rights at Boston University suspects the motives of the transplant community saying, “The bottom line is that they want to do everything they can to increase organ donation.”

They new UNOS guidelines also identify certain types of patients, such as those with severe spinal cord injuries, and terminal diseases such as muscular dystrophy and ALS (Lou Gehrig’s disease), as potential organ donors before they reach the end stage. Critics worry that this will encourage doctors to subtly pressure these into voluntarily foregoing the most heroic medical measures in order to gain access to their organs for transplant that much sooner.

Critics of the new UNOS standards say that they increase the risk that potential organ donors will be treated more like living human tissue banks than critically sick patients who deserving every chance to live, or to have their wishes to die peacefully respected.

“This change in policy creates the appearance that the patient is always being evaluated as a possible donor, which I think would make the public uneasy, and rightfully so,” said Leslie Whetstine, a Walsh University associate professor of medical ethics.

About the Author:


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “New Organ Transplant Guidelines Raise Ethical Questions”

Comments are closed.

Current Top Story
A view of desecrated tomb stones vandalized by unknown assailants in the Mount of Olives cemetery,  June 2015.
Netanyahu’s Grandfather’s Tombstone Smashed in Mount of Olives Arab Desecration
Latest Sections Stories
Lunchbox Restaurant in Tel Aviv.

Bringing your own sandwich to a restaurant would appear as the height of chutzpah, but not any more—at least not at Lunchbox…

Recipe-082815-LChaim-cookbook

Last year, OneFamily published a cookbook in Hebrew featuring the bereaved mothers’ recipes.

Astaire-082815-Books

How did an unresolved murder case turn into an accusation of ritual murder?

Recipe-082815-Apple-cover

Excerpted from The Apple Cookbook (c) Olwen Woodier. Photography by (c) Leigh Beisch Photography with Food Stylist Robyn Valarik. Used with permission of Storey Publishing.

The flag had been taken down in the aftermath of the Charleston shooting and was now back and flying.

A light breakfast of coffee and danishes will be available during the program.

A variety of glatt kosher food will be available for purchase at Kosher Korner (near Section 1).

Jewish Press South Florida Editor Shelley Benveniste will deliver a talk.

Corey Brier, corresponding secretary of the organization, introduced the rabbi.

The magnificent 400-seat sanctuary with beautiful stained glass windows, a stunning carved glass Aron Kodesh, a ballroom, social hall, and beis medrash will accommodate the growing synagogue.

Even when our prayers are ignored and troubles confront us, Rabbi Shoff teaches that it is the same God who sent the difficulties as who answered our prayers before.

I’ve put together some of the most frequently asked questions regarding bullies, friendship and learning disabilities.

His parents make it clear that they feel the right thing is for Avi to visit his grandfather, but they leave it up to him.

More Articles from Joel Mandel
boo-leon-reich

Leon experienced the War of Independence from a soldier’s perspective, while remaining true to his Jewish ideals and beliefs.

One of the most difficult moral aspects of organ transplantation is the fact that in many cases, the organ donor must be declared clinically dead before the life-saving surgical procedure can begin.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/sections/health/new-organ-transplant-guidelines-raise-ethical-questions/2012/01/09/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: