Bioethical Issue Surrounding Organ Donation

Organ donation and transplantation are considered as some of the medical advances of the twenty first century. Organ transplantation involves replacement of a dead organ in person’s body with a functional organ obtained from another person by surgical means. According to Abouna (2003), organ donation and organ transplantation provide a way of giving a gift of life to a person with a completely failed organ. In the process, the organ donor loses the organ that is transplanted into another person. Organs used for transplantation can be obtained from either deceased or living individuals. The main bioethical issue surrounding organ donation is the question about the morality of taking a person’s organ and transplanting it into another person’s body. Personally, I feel that organ donation is ethical because it helps to offer a gift of life to a person with terminal organ failure. This position is supported using utilitarianism ethics. According to Copp (2006), utilitarianism ethics assumes that an action is considered ethical if it brings about the net greatest benefits. If the organ is obtained from a dying person, organ donation acts as a good way of maximizing utility of an organ that would go into waste suppose it is left unused. Moreover, if the organ is obtained from a living individual, all the necessary legal procedures will have been followed, and the donor may continue living like where only one kidney has been donated. In this case, the receiver enjoys the greatest benefits from organ donation. Supporting organ donation using utilitarianism ethical theory makes more sense that when it is looked at in terms of deontological ethical theory. According to Copp (2006), deontological ethical theory assumes that a person’s action is considered ethical if the person would be willing that it becomes a universal law. Of course, nobody would wish that organ donation be made a universal law, and looking at organ donation in this perspective would mean that it is completely unethical.

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