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Human Exceptionalism

Life and dignity with Wesley J. Smith.

Moving Organ Donors Instead of Organs



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I think this is a very good idea. Rather than procure organs in disparate hospitals, in the Midwest, they are now moving donors to a centralized location. From the AP story:

For decades, surgeons have traveled to far-off hospitals to remove organs from brain-dead donors and then rushed back to transplant them. Now an experiment in the Midwest suggests there may be a better way: Bring the donors to the doctors instead.

A study out Tuesday reports on liver transplants from the nation’s first free-standing organ retrieval center. Nearly all organ donors now are transported to Mid-America Transplant Services in St. Louis from a region including parts of Missouri, Illinois and Arkansas. Removing organs at this central location near the four hospitals that do transplants saves money, the study found.

The livers spent less time outside the donor’s body, which at least in theory improves the odds of success. Doctors also think they are getting more usable organs from each donor, though this study only looked at livers.

One of the problems with the organ donation process has been varying standards of declaring death and a relative lack of expertise in some facilities. This new approach offers greater efficiency and professionalism. Good.



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