Comparison/Contrast essay onĀ Organ Donation
Nowadays, the problem of organ donation is extremely important. The need of patients in transplantation of organs steadily increases while the modern medicine progresses rapidly provide larger opportunities for successful transplantation. With the invention of cyclosporine organ transplantations could be booming but, instead, there is still the obvious lack of organs for transplantation. To a significant extent, this problem is determined by ethical issues related to the informing potential donors or members of their families about the possible use of their organs for transplantation. In this respect, it is possible to find cases of absolutely different approaches to the solution of this problem, though one of them seems to be absolutely unethical. In this respect, it is possible to refer to the case studies “Talking about Organ Procurement when One of Your Patients Dies”¯ and “Illegal Human Organ Trade from Executed Prisoners in China”¯, which actually reveal to absolutely opposite approaches to the ethical aspect of the problem of organ donation.
First of all, it should be said that basically both articles raise the problem of informing donors and members of the family about possible organ donations and receiving their agreement. At the same time, the case studies prove to be totally different in approaches applied. In fact, “Talking about Organ Procurement when One of Your Patients Dies”¯ is totally focused on the problem of talking to terminally ill patients and members of their families about the possibility of using their organs for transplantation. As the study reveals, the offer to donate an organ of a relative that has just died may sound quite shocking for relatives and provoke extremely negative reaction and the rejection of the idea of organ donation. This is why the author argues that it is necessary to improve the existing legislation and prepare healthcare professionals to such talks to patients and their relatives in order to minimize the risk of moral or psychological shock and adapt this process to ethically acceptable norms. In general, the author recommends healthcare professionals to have special training to get ready to such talks. At the same time, the correct approach to a patient and his/her relatives may lead to increase of organ donations.
The article “Illegal Human Organ Trade from Executed Prisoners inChina”¯ also focuses on the problem of the use of organs but, unlike the previously discussed article, this one, in contrast, reveals another side of the problem of informing patients and their relatives about the possibility of organ transplantation. In fact, the author of the article reveals the problem that executed prisoners in China are not informed about the fact that their organs will be used for transplantation neither are their relatives. In such a way, unlike the previous case, this one draws the public attention to the problem of absolutely unethical and illegal, according to international legislative norms, operations with human organs. In actuality, in this case “patients”¯ do not even have a vague idea about the “future”¯ of their organs. Naturally, there are no talks with prisoners or their relatives, instead their interests and attitude to organ donation are simply ignored.
In such a way, the two case studies described above perfectly illustrate two opposite sides of ethical problem of organ donation. On the one hand, there is a necessity to prepare morally and psychologically patients to the possibility of organ donation after their death, while, on the other hand, there is a problem of the illegal use of human organs without even receiving any kind of consent from the part of an individual, who is actually used as a donor, or from the part of his/her family. Both articles provide quite a detailed background of the problem discussed and give a historical overview of the essence of the problem and its evolution in the course of time. Furthermore, both articles provide ample references to legislative acts in order to prove the correctness of conclusions and suggestions made in the case studies. At the same time, “Illegal Human Organ Trade from Executed Prisoners in China”¯ analyzes the problem of illegal use of organs without patients consent in details analyzing political, economic, legal and ethical issues, while “Talking about Organ Procurement when One of Your Patients Dies”¯ basically focuses on legal and ethical issues related to the healthcare system and professionals training.
Thus, taking into account all above mentioned, it is possible to conclude that the development of organ donations is accompanied by numerous ethical challenges. In this respect, the necessity of informing patients is an essential condition on which human organ donation for transplantation is possible that, though, needs special training of healthcare professionals in order to convince patients and their families that organ donation is a right decision. On the other hand, the illegal use of human organs without not only receiving a patient consent but even without informing him/her about the fact of the use of his/her organs for transplantation is absolutely unethical and this practice should be stopped.