Canada’s current system requires people to sign up to be organ donors, but does it make more sense for us to be involuntarily considered donors, and opt-out, rather than in, if we want to?
Some say yes.
The Canadian Liver Foundation, for one, argues that Canada should adopt the ‘presumed consent model.’
According to their website, Canada has one of the worst records for organ donation in the Western world, while countries that have presumed consent have high organ donor rates.
A study in the British Medical Journal examining donation rates before and after the introduction of legislation for presumed consent proves that’s true.
In fact, it shows a significant increase in donation rates, with presumed consent increasing organ donation by 25-30 percent.
Many European countries have already adopted the model, with success, but does that mean Canada should too?
It could mean less Canadians dying while waiting on organ transplant lists, just because people, who might like to be donors, didn’t opt in when they had the chance.
But presumed consent isn’t the only way to increase rates of donation. Creating a ‘donation culture,’ could be the key. The recent introduction of Facebook‘s organ donor feature in the U.S. resulted in 100,000 people declaring their decision to become donors, so having that option in Canada would likely have similar results.
What do you think? Is Canada’s current opt-in option working? Or should we all automatically be considered organ donors?