On Sky News today, there has been an interesting debate about organ donation and whether, here in the UK, we should switch from a system where you can choose to ‘opt in’ to donating your organs upon your death, as things currently work, or whether to switch to an ‘opt out’ of the organ donating system.
As I am sure is the same with most people, I have not actually stopped to give the matter of organ donation the thought that it deserves. That said, I cannot find any reason to refuse to ‘opt in’ or to refuse for the ‘opt in’ to be mandatory from birth. I question why there should even be an ‘opt out’? Can we morally expect to be treated by our wonderful NHS, with the life saving intervention of a donated organ, if we are not prepared to offer our own organs in the same way; towards saving the life, or quality of life, of another?
I understand that some people have religious grounds for not donating. It surprised me to learn that some people claim that their religion would not permit organ donation. I find it hard to understand that we might choose to let organs rot away or be cremated, rather than be used to save or enhance a life?
This post is not about religion. This post is about humanity. My view is that we must surely question the ethic of being willing to receive a donated organ, if we are ourselves unwilling to offer the same. This is a question we must ask of ourselves and each other, for we are all members of a wider community.
I would, therefore, support the ‘opt in’ being replaced with a mandatory requirement for all members of our population to donate their organs. Personally, I can see no justification for an ‘opt out’. This would bring me back to question the ethic of someone being willing to receive a donated organ yet refusing to be a donor, themselves. I stand to be corrected and I offer my views respectful of the fact that others may disagree.
To find out more see: