Merci de ne PAS poster de messages concernant la vente d'un organe et comportant des coordonnées téléphoniques, e-mail, etc. La loi française interdit la vente d'organes.

USA (NY): "Paying for Kidneys" (cont'd)

Virginia Postrel and Summer Johnson spar over notion of altruism and whether it is appropriate to offer incentives to living organ donors to increase the number of kidneys donated in the US. Who wins the debate?

"Any Argument in the Storm: Postrel Gets It Wrong on Kidney Donation"
"Virginia Postrel is picking a fight with the National Kidney Foundation (NKF) for saying that paying organ donors would be an 'affront' to unpaid donors and that it would 'cheapen the gift', according to The New Yorker.

Taking them on, living unpaid organ donor herself Virginia Postrel says that NKF's argument is itself an affront to her gift to her friend, Sally Satel, to whom she donated a kidney in 2006. Ultimately, Ms. Postrel's position amounts to the idea that unpaid organ donors shouldn't care one bit whether organ donors are paid or not - either they give their kidneys freely to benefit those they care about, not to feel morally superior or to have someone feel obligated to them for life.

All other arguments against payments for organs aside, Postrel clearly sees nothing wrong with paying for organs - as it doesn't cheapen HER gift to HER friend. Yet, I challenge Ms. Postrel to consider what life would be like for Ms. Satel right now had she not had so good of a friend. Ms. Satel would be one of 80,000 people in the US waiting on a list to receive a kidney, and one could only hope that she would not be one of the 4,000 who die each year while waiting on that list.

But rather than focusing on your disgust that the National Kidney Foundation will not let others sell their kidneys to strangers, Ms. Postrel, perhaps that ire could be focused upon the more practical policy options that are out there that may actually come to pass if the American public could be convinced that, for example, an opt-out system would not result in American doctors and hospitals becoming body -snatchers for human organs on a black market and a significant increase in available organs for donation. (See AJOB's Target Article on this topic this month.)

There simply are not going to be enough living donors, like you Ms. Postrel, or even 4, 6, and 8-way organ swaps, to go around to make up for the 80,000 people waiting for kidneys. We need to find another way. Even with the system of sale for kidneys with which you are so sanguine, too few people think that the commodification of the body is okay and fear that those of lower socioeconomic status will be at risk for harm.

Given your passion for the issue, perhaps you could turn your disgust into something positive and help us bioethicists find a solution for the Sally Satel's of the world who are literally dying for kidneys all across this country."

Summer Johnson, PhD

1 commentaire:

Ethics, Health and Death 2.0 a dit…

"Kidney Donors: We Have A Right To Feel Smug And Superior" : article by Joe Weisenthal, Jul. 22, 2009

"With talk of health policy in the air, the conversation is moving beyond money towards bioethics.

This past weekend, Peter Singer wrote in the New York Times magazine that -- gasp! -- we'd have to draw the line somewhere when it came to expensive end-of-life care. (...) And our latest area of fascination, the uber-controversial market for organs, gets more play in the 'New Yorker' (via Megan McArdle).

Legalizing payment for organs is a ferociously controversial topic in the organ world. Opponents fear exploitation—that the poor will become organ suppliers for the rich. ('You can imagine a scenario where someone would say, Welfare? You’ve still got two kidneys!' the political philosopher Peter Lawler has said. 'There would be the expectation that your kidney might be understood as part of your net wealth.') It is presumably true that most organ sellers would be poor; on the other hand, many of the recipients would be poor also. Others worry that paid donors would have a motive to lie about aspects of their medical history that might cause a transplant center to reject them, and it’s true that while many kidney-related problems can be tested for, some crucial ones can be hidden — a family history of kidney disease or diabetes, for instance, or an individual history of kidney stones or drug abuse. The National Kidney Foundation opposes compensation on the grounds that it would 'cheapen the gift' — that it may be an 'affront' to those who have already donated. ('The argument that paying organ donors is ‘an affront’ to unpaid donors is disgusting,' Virginia Postrel, who donated a kidney to her acquaintance Sally Satel, wrote on her website. 'Are unpaid donors giving organs to save lives or just to make themselves feel morally superior?')

Postrel's right. The 'National Kidney Foundation' is making an affront to actual donors if it's actually suggesting that the main reason they're donating is for their own sense of self satisfaction. How dare you cheapen my gift, as though the whole point of kidney donation were actually to help the recipients?"