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Health: Clinics and patient association for new organ donation initiative

Health: Clinics and patient association for new organ donation initiative
Health: Clinics and patient association for new organ donation initiative

Rules regarding organ donation are always controversial. Now there is a new proposal that is approved by those affected and doctors.

The German Hospital Association (DKG) supports the new initiative to introduce an opt-out solution for organ donation. “The opt-out solution can save more lives because it forces people to actively engage with the question of organ donation,” said DKG Chairman Gerald Gaß to the Redaktionsnetzwerk Deutschland (RND). Far too many people are continuing to wait in vain for a donor organ.

A group of MPs had presented a cross-party initiative in the Bundestag aimed at introducing an opt-out rule. This would mean that everyone would initially be considered an organ donor – except for those who actively object. Currently, organ removal in Germany is only permitted with explicit consent. A first attempt at such a reform failed in 2020. Health Minister Karl Lauterbach (SPD) supports the new attempt to end “dying on the waiting list”.

The Federal Association of Organ Transplant Recipients (BDO) called the new initiative “urgent and important”. The association, which also represents the waiting patients, called for further steps beyond this. The model must be part of the overall concept, BDO boss Sandra Zumpfe told the RND. Continuous education, support for transplant officers and removal clinics, as well as greater recognition and support for the surviving relatives of organ donors are also necessary.

More organs such as kidneys, livers or hearts for seriously ill patients have been urgently needed for years. Last year, 965 people released one or more organs for others after their death, according to the coordinating German Organ Transplant Foundation. At the same time, however, 8,400 people were on waiting lists. In order for donations to even be considered, two specialists must independently determine that a deceased person is brain dead.

Source: Stern

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