In the past half-century, solid organ transplantation has become standard treatment for a variety of diseases. The technique of successful transplant operations has given rise to a whole range of ethical questions. Currently, the major ethical problems come out of the shortage of organs, which has motivated a host of efforts to increase organ supply, some of which are very controversial.
The purpose of this essay is to explore some of the ethical issues involved in transplantation.
The ethics of transplantation derives from a tension between bodily integrity and human solidarity. Several widely accepted bioethical principles are relevant to practices in transplantation. They include non-maleficence (avoiding harm), beneficence (producing benefit), autonomy (respecting personal choices), and justice (distributing benefits and burdens equitably). These principles require that some basic conditions should always be satisfied for an organ donation to be ethical.
On the base of the principles discussed we conclude that organ donation is a noble act of human solidarity, therefore medical community as well as society should support this high value gift. However donation is a personal decision taken by the donor well informed and the consent given. To fully respect donor’s human dignity, the transplant should preserve the life and the integrity of the donor. While the sale of organs should be regarded as a reductive and instrumental use of the person, we strongly support an appropriate implementation of the educational pathway to obtain acts of personal and humanistic organ donation.
|Stato di pubblicazione||Pubblicato - 2009|
- Ethical issues