PROBLEM: Not enough people worldwide are donating their organs – while alive and dead – to help those in need. According to Public Radio International (PRI), “in the United States alone, more than 100,000 people are waiting for organ donations, and many of these patients will die waiting.”
ISRAEL’S SOLUTION: PRI reports that this month, Israel’s new organ donation incentive law comes into effect. To boost its number of organ donors, the law gives priority to donors over non-donors when it comes to receiving an organ.
Basically, if you’re willing to give up your own body part, you’re deserving enough to get the privilege of another’s. In fact, due to your personal mitzvah, the priority even extends to your family – to first degree relatives of those who have signed donor cards, to first degree relatives of those who have died and given organs, and to live donors of a kidney, liver lobe or lung lobe who have donated for as yet undesignated recipients.
Don’t worry, new law or not, Medical News Today reports that a patient in “urgent need of a heart, lung, or liver transplant due to their serious condition will continue to receive priority.” But… if two such people need the same organ, then the priority status kicks in.
What do YOU think?
Do you agree with Israel’s incentive program? How would you ethically address the organ problem here in the United States? Do you think there’s a Jewish perspective on this issue?