Friday, July 06, 2007

I can't take it

Here's an article on the lawsuit brought on by a mom in California who says that a transplant surgeon misrepresented himself and took a dying patient off life support to do a DCD donation without her consent, then kept ordering the nurse to up the pain meds to make him die quicker. I don't know what the truth is, I do know he's being investigated by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid-the agency that oversees hospital compliance in many areas in order to be reimbursed by medicare and medicaid. They also put out the regulations regarding organ donation and survey the OPO's to make sure they are following best practices as put forth by Health and Human Services Organ Donation Breakthrough Collaborative.

Anyway, regardless of what you think this doctor did or didn't do-read the comments. I can't believe, in regards to organ donation or anything else for that matter, that people are so ignorant. I read things like this and I think that if you don't believe in organ donation, you shouldn't get an organ. It's that simple. It's like members of PETA, who can believe whatever they want, but don't come to the hospital and expect to get any treatments that involved animal experiments. That may leave you with only bandaids and ice packs, but I wouldn't want your principles to be compromised just because your dying.

Am I alone in thinking it's a miracle that ANYONE gets an organ?

BTW, I got a great reader comment in the last post and I posted a rather lengthy reply. Just thought you might be interested and also I'd be interested in other points of view on the same.


Alison said...

I'm curious as to what you personally think about LifeSharers then? They are a still small group of folks who are not on the UNOS list mostly (I think) who have agreed to donate their organs after death and to give priority to their organs after death to others who have joined LifeSharers and agreed to donate their organs.

TC said...

Well, I have to look into this more-I went to LifeSharers and they say it's free to join, as opposed to Matching Donors-which charges a hefty fee to be a lifetime member. I think there premis is sound, but I think this should be legislated so it can have government oversight. Just like with cash incentives, I think the risk for abuse is great. Also, since I think organs for organ donors is a good idea-it should be applied to all, not just the people who see these web sites.

Dave Undis said...

TC: You said "I think organs for organ donors is a good idea-it should be applied to all, not just the people who see these web sites."

I agree wth you completely. UNOS should adopt the LifeSharers approach. If it did, just about everybody in the United States would register as an organ donor. Thousands of lives would be saved every year. Americans bury or cremate 20,000 transplantable organs every year. This terrible waste would be reduced tremendously if people knew they'd go to the back of the transplant waiting list if they didn't register as organ donors.

In the absence of UNOS action, LifeSharers is making this happen on a grass-roots basis one member at a time. Since you think "organs for organ donors" is a good idea, I hope you'll join LifeSharers. Membership is free at or by calling 1-888-ORGAN88. There is no age limit, parents can enroll their minor children, and no one is excluded due to any pre-existing medical condition.


Dave Undis
Executive Director