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Time to Address the Problem of Post-Mortem Procurement of Organs for Transplantation Occurring without Proper Pre-mortem Consent

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Abstract Current cadaveric organ transplant systems allow individuals to be classified as donors after death where they registered wishes in favour of this prior to death. However, systems for registering wishes pertaining to donation fall woefully short of securing proper consent. Furthermore, even jurisdictions which technically require consent to be obtained in order to treat an individual as a donor, allow that consent to be given by next of kin after death in circumstances where there is no evidence of the individual having refused prior to death. This article explores these and related issues with current systems from the perspectives of health law norms, ethics and human rights. It concludes that proper pre-mortem consent ought to be a pre-requisite for post-mortem organ transplantation.

Affiliations: 1: Nottingham Law School, Nottingham Trent University Nottingham UK


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