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Illegal Organ Trafficking Options · View
Dancing_Doll
Posted: Friday, July 30, 2010 2:51:20 PM

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Joined: 2/17/2010
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Location: West Coast
Current estimates suggest that in the US alone, ‘17 people die each day waiting for transplants that can’t take place because of the shortage of donated organs.’

Although illegal in most nations, the voluntary sale of purchased donor kidneys now accounts for thousands of black market transplants, creating a kind of "transplantation tourism". Conservative estimates suggest that 15,000 kidney's are trafficked each year from Israel, Egypt, Brazil, South Africa, Indonesia, India and Iraq. Donors get paid approximately 1,000 to $5,000 on the current black market, and the buyer often pays $100,000 - $200,000 for the same organ!

The World Health Organization sees this as a human rights violation, exploitation of the poor, providing unequal access to health services based on status and wealth, and most can agree that black market organ trafficking cannot guarantee the quality of post-operative care or any health issues that might result because of it.

For the buyers who have been waiting on transplant lists for months, desperation to save their lives may push them to agree to seek out illegal organ donation.

What do you think of this? Is it unethical to suggest that the wealthy use their status to buy organs from the poor? Is it exploitation? What if your life was on the line... would you be tempted to consider this if you had the money, and it meant saving your life?

Do you think that organ donation should extend to the legalization of being able to purchase organs from healthy donors that need the money, using a market price that would be fair to the donor/buyer?


Guest
Posted: Friday, July 30, 2010 3:06:43 PM

Rank: Lurker

Joined: 12/1/2006
Posts: 531,823
Ooh, I just watched a B rated horror movie about this. "Sutures" I think.

Something of this effect was on CNN today. There's a man here who has Lou Gehrig's disease that wants to be euthanized so they can use his organs.

Larry Hagman bought 2 livers. Don't thing regular people would be able to do that. Money talks,eh?
LusciousLola
Posted: Friday, July 30, 2010 3:10:02 PM

Rank: Forum Guru

Joined: 3/5/2010
Posts: 2,877
Location: Island of tranquility
At this point I'm sure I haven't thought of all the implications for this. At this point I can see both sides of the issue. If it were legal, it could certainly help save more lives and financially help many as well. I don't really think that this is exploiting the poor. I also don't think that it would just be the "poor" that would consider selling an extra kidney.
Wealthy people use their status all the time. It may not be fair, but life is not fair. You can hardly blame them for using their means to get the desired outcome. I know I would do it for a family member if I had the means to.
My thoughts on this might change as I hear more opinions from the rest of you. I'm looking forward to reading more thoughts on this topic.
Dancing_Doll
Posted: Friday, July 30, 2010 3:37:34 PM

Rank: Alpha Blonde

Joined: 2/17/2010
Posts: 6,234
Location: West Coast
chefkathleen wrote:
Ooh, I just watched a B rated horror movie about this. "Sutures" I think.



Turistas was better! glasses8


SweetPenny
Posted: Friday, July 30, 2010 4:45:57 PM

Rank: Moderator

Joined: 6/15/2010
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Location: State of Confusion
We can sell our eggs. Why can't we sell a kidney?
Guest
Posted: Friday, July 30, 2010 5:03:50 PM

Rank: Lurker

Joined: 12/1/2006
Posts: 531,823
Dancing_Doll wrote:
chefkathleen wrote:
Ooh, I just watched a B rated horror movie about this. "Sutures" I think.



Turistas was better! glasses8


It sounds good. evil4
Reminds me of The Midnight Meat Train too. ick.
LadyX
Posted: Friday, July 30, 2010 5:08:00 PM

Rank: Artistic Tart

Joined: 9/25/2009
Posts: 4,827
Quote:

Reminds me of The Midnight Meat Train.


LOL, I rode that train once- couldn't walk straight for two days. Good time, though. evil4
LadyX
Posted: Friday, July 30, 2010 5:12:42 PM

Rank: Artistic Tart

Joined: 9/25/2009
Posts: 4,827
Like Lola, said, I don't blame anybody with the means to buy organs on the black market for doing it and save their lives or their loved ones' lives. If I had the money, and needed a kidney or liver, I'd be ordering that styrofoam ice chest from Brazil without hesitation.

A guy I know works at a big hospital here, and he's sometimes around when the organ harvesting teams show up in a helicopter, swoop into the operating room, pack up the organs and disappear. He's looked into it, and everything is definitely not on the up and up, and that's supposedly a legit one. Anything's corrupt if it can be, I've decided- and this is another example.

Couldn't agree more Penny, if we can sell our eggs, and men can sell sperm, I should be able to sell any part of myself I want. It's my loss, and gain- nobody else's.
Dancing_Doll
Posted: Friday, July 30, 2010 5:29:28 PM

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Joined: 2/17/2010
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Location: West Coast
If they legalized and regulated it, they could do away with the backward "organ transplant" ops they have going on in some of those countries where the middle man gets paid all the cash. If a donor is signed up to sell his kidney for $1000 in an illegal operation with no post-operative care or coverage should any complications arise, then I think that is definitely exploitation. Especially when the same kidney is sold to a buyer for $150,000. That's some nice profit that the person who actually owned the kidney never received!

I thought this quote was interesting!

Quote:
The case for legalizing kidney purchase hinges on the key premise that individuals are entitled to control of their body parts even to the point of inducing risk of life, and suggest that establishing a federal agency to manage this and provide fair market price of about $40,000 to donors is currently being discussed.


The argument against something like this stems from the Universal Declaration of Human Rights which suggests that this practice could be coercive and therefore in violation of basic human rights and exploiting the poor. Imagine all the manipulations that might occur as families put pressure on other family members to donate a kidney to keep them financially afloat. After all, we all know how woman are seen in some of these countries... Women's rights are not the same as they are in the rest of the world! If women are being married off for dowry, and others sold into the sex industry, just imagine how much more valuable it might be to keep your daughters and sell them off for parts! I can see where things could go downhill fast!

On the other hand... I don't necessarily see this as something exclusively for the poor in developing nations. Think of what it would mean in this financial economy to have the option of selling a kidney for $40K. I'm sure that would appeal to many people right now.


rxtales
Posted: Friday, July 30, 2010 8:18:49 PM

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Joined: 11/28/2008
Posts: 2,589
Location: Newcastle, United Kingdom
I have some Iranian family who are doctors in Tehran. They were telling me that it is the only country where it is legal to sell your own organs. I don't really know the specifics, and am not really sure what to think about it.
DamonX
Posted: Friday, July 30, 2010 11:23:56 PM

Rank: Forum Guru

Joined: 1/25/2009
Posts: 795
I used to be all for the voluntary sale of organs. Then after an enlightening discussion with a friend, I began to see things a little different.

As in earlier posts, I have stated my aversion to any privatization of health care...and this is the extreme example of just that. Legal or otherwise, it places capitalism above the health care needs of the public. It would be hypocritical to propose universal health care while still seeing nothing wrong with the sale of human organs. It creates a tiered system in which the wealthy are provided a better quality of care than those less able. Medicine should never be oriented towards the pursuit of profit, since it tends to lead to the detriment of the care of those of lower economic standing.

Maybe I'm just a bit of a "commie" at heart, but I'm not all utopian idealism in any way. Do we want to benefit a few? Or benefit many? If you investigate, you'll find that having a poor health, low class section of society benefits nobody. Things like health care, law enforcement, and education should be equal for all. Doing otherwise creates a situation in which a select few prosper while the majority exists in squalor.

Swimming pools are a luxury. Tivo is a luxury. A new kidney is not.

This type of blind capitalism (which currently permeates the medical field) is the reason why billions are spent on boner pills while hundreds of thousands in Africa die of infectious diseases that have were eradicated in the "developed" world a century ago.

Well....I am now stepping down off my soap box. Who wants to talk about pubic hair!!
MrNudiePants
Posted: Saturday, July 31, 2010 1:02:19 PM

Rank: Forum Guru

Joined: 8/10/2009
Posts: 2,140
Location: United States
LadyX wrote:
Like Lola, said, I don't blame anybody with the means to buy organs on the black market for doing it and save their lives or their loved ones' lives. If I had the money, and needed a kidney or liver, I'd be ordering that styrofoam ice chest from Brazil without hesitation.

A guy I know works at a big hospital here, and he's sometimes around when the organ harvesting teams show up in a helicopter, swoop into the operating room, pack up the organs and disappear. He's looked into it, and everything is definitely not on the up and up, and that's supposedly a legit one. Anything's corrupt if it can be, I've decided- and this is another example.

Couldn't agree more Penny, if we can sell our eggs, and men can sell sperm, I should be able to sell any part of myself I want. It's my loss, and gain- nobody else's.


But then, what would happen to all the urban legends about waking up in a hotel bathtub full of ice while on vacation? laughing2


Quote:

Maybe I'm just a bit of a "commie" at heart, but I'm not all utopian idealism in any way. Do we want to benefit a few? Or benefit many? If you investigate, you'll find that having a poor health, low class section of society benefits nobody. Things like health care, law enforcement, and education should be equal for all. Doing otherwise creates a situation in which a select few prosper while the majority exists in squalor.



"Commie" misnomer notwithstanding, I tend to agree - and disagree (no big surprise there! LOL). Most developed countries have economic systems in place where if you strive and work hard, you can achieve more than those who just sit around and do nothing. I have no problem with hard-working, industrious people being able to reward themselves for their hard work with better things. A more luxurious standard of life, if you will. People that don't want to work hard, people that are willing to live out their lives on the dole, shouldn't expect the same standards of living as those who go to school, get advanced degrees, and work hard to provide for themselves and their offspring. I believe this should translate into every facet of our lives; from basic needs like food and shelter to more advanced needs like medical care.

I do agree with the idea that having a lower-class section of society that's also in poor health benefits nobody. I believe that a society is only as strong as it's weakest elements. You can judge the strength and wealth of a society in general by looking at the wealth (or lack) of it's poorest group. I'm in favor of providing good basic health care for all of a society's members, just as a matter of course. I also believe, though, that if a member of that society has chosen to waste their lives through whatever course, and not produce anything of value for that society, then they should be forced to accept the fact that more industrious, harder-working people should be placed ahead of them when it comes time for doling out any kind of advanced care that's in extremely limited quantities, like good working kidneys.

As for the idea of legalizing the sale of organs for transplant use... Geez. I'm not entirely sure of my position. I can easily see how corrupt it would become. How about this: People are allowed to list various body parts in an database somewhere. Then, as the need arises, auctions can be held, with the kidney going to whoever is the highest bidder. This way, whoever wants the body part the most (as shown by having the highest bid) will get it, while someone else (who apparently values money more than health) will lose out...

Rembacher
Posted: Saturday, July 31, 2010 2:12:37 PM

Rank: Forum Guru

Joined: 10/16/2008
Posts: 1,106
I'm not entirely sure how the current system works, but I know we do have some form of list of people waiting for organ donations. The only way I'm ok with paying someone for their organ "donation" is if it still goes to the person at the top of that transplant list. In my mind, this would basically work on a system where organs have predefined values, and the government (in Canada) would compensate you for your organ. I don't know whether it would be cost effective for the government to pay for organs rather than continue paying the health costs for people who need them, but if it makes financial sense, that's the only way I would pay people for organ donations.
thepainter
Posted: Saturday, July 31, 2010 2:51:33 PM

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Joined: 10/23/2009
Posts: 1,353
Location: hell, Netherlands
This thread reminds me of the new "Repo men" movie I watched recently where the repo men recollect organs that people can't pay off on.

Insert typical super smart ass comment courtesy of thepainter here.
Dancing_Doll
Posted: Saturday, July 31, 2010 2:59:13 PM

Rank: Alpha Blonde

Joined: 2/17/2010
Posts: 6,234
Location: West Coast
MrNudiePants wrote:
[
As for the idea of legalizing the sale of organs for transplant use... Geez. I'm not entirely sure of my position. I can easily see how corrupt it would become. How about this: People are allowed to list various body parts in an database somewhere. Then, as the need arises, auctions can be held, with the kidney going to whoever is the highest bidder. This way, whoever wants the body part the most (as shown by having the highest bid) will get it, while someone else (who apparently values money more than health) will lose out...


Dr Kevorkian actually wrote an article called "Solve the Organ Shortage: Let the Bidding Begin" for the American Journal of Forensic Psychiatry a few years ago. It's an interesting concept, although logistically I'm not sure how easy this would be. What if someone agrees, signs papers, and then just before the operation, decides that they don't want to sell their kidney after all. Is he contractually bound to the gurney and hauled off to the operating room? A lot of factors have to be in place in order to complete a transplant.

Interestingly enough, someone already tried to sell their kidney on eBay many years ago, and the auction produced a nice lump sum before it got pulled! In fact with $5.7 million as the current market value because of transplant waiting lists, I'm sure there are many people that would be more than happy to give up a kidney. We are definitely a profit-driven society... and have not really evolved to the point of altruism when it comes to giving up something in order to save another.

Quote:

A human kidney offered on the internet auction site eBay received a high bid of $5.7 million before the company discovered the action and pulled the plug. Seven separate bids were received between August 26 and September 1 when eBay terminated the bidding.

The seller was identified only as "hchero" from Sunrise, FL. The minimum bid requested as $25,000. The description of the kidney read: "Fully functional kidney for sale. You can choose either kidney. Buyer pays all transplant and medical costs. Of course only one for sale, as I need the other one to live. Serious bids only."

A second kidney with a minimum bid of $4 million was listed on September 1 after word of the first listing was published. There were no bidders before the item was pulled.


I would be concerned however, that with all the focus on monetary gain from selling an organ, that coercion and corruption would definitely factor into play here. It would be so easy for a dominant/abusive person to unfairly pressure someone into doing this for the financial gain of the family. I can only imagine the onslaught of lawsuits resulting after the fact when someone decides to say that they were "forced or tricked into it" by a spouse, parent or child.

In fact only recently there was the case of the Long Island doctor who sued his ex-wife for $1.5 million after he donated his kidney to save her life. She then cheated on him and demanded a divorce. He said she should compensate him for the organ he gave her.

Hmm... if they ever legalize organ sales, I have a feeling this could be a whole new area to specialize in for litigation lawyers.



DamonX
Posted: Saturday, July 31, 2010 6:23:39 PM

Rank: Forum Guru

Joined: 1/25/2009
Posts: 795
Quote:
"Commie" misnomer notwithstanding, I tend to agree - and disagree (no big surprise there! LOL). Most developed countries have economic systems in place where if you strive and work hard, you can achieve more than those who just sit around and do nothing. I have no problem with hard-working, industrious people being able to reward themselves for their hard work with better things. A more luxurious standard of life, if you will. People that don't want to work hard, people that are willing to live out their lives on the dole, shouldn't expect the same standards of living as those who go to school, get advanced degrees, and work hard to provide for themselves and their offspring. I believe this should translate into every facet of our lives; from basic needs like food and shelter to more advanced needs like medical care.

I do agree with the idea that having a lower-class section of society that's also in poor health benefits nobody. I believe that a society is only as strong as it's weakest elements. You can judge the strength and wealth of a society in general by looking at the wealth (or lack) of it's poorest group. I'm in favor of providing good basic health care for all of a society's members, just as a matter of course. I also believe, though, that if a member of that society has chosen to waste their lives through whatever course, and not produce anything of value for that society, then they should be forced to accept the fact that more industrious, harder-working people should be placed ahead of them when it comes time for doling out any kind of advanced care that's in extremely limited quantities, like good working kidneys.


I agree that being successful should allow a more luxurious standard of life. But I don't see adaquate health care as a luxury. A working class middle-american should get the same care as a millionaire. Esecially in the case of organ transplantation where the comoditiy is in very high demand. Now, if you're talking about homeless people or drug addicts....well they would never be approved for organ transplant anyways.

A human organ is the most precious commodity that exists, and if the recipient is unable to respect that, then they don't deserve it. If its a skin transplant for cosmetic purposes then let the rich pay for it...but if its a heart transplant to save someone's life...then it should be equal for all (as long as they meet the requirements) .
MrNudiePants
Posted: Saturday, July 31, 2010 7:38:50 PM

Rank: Forum Guru

Joined: 8/10/2009
Posts: 2,140
Location: United States
DamonX wrote:


I agree that being successful should allow a more luxurious standard of life. But I don't see adaquate health care as a luxury. A working class middle-american should get the same care as a millionaire. Esecially in the case of organ transplantation where the comoditiy is in very high demand. Now, if you're talking about homeless people or drug addicts....well they would never be approved for organ transplant anyways.

A human organ is the most precious commodity that exists, and if the recipient is unable to respect that, then they don't deserve it. If its a skin transplant for cosmetic purposes then let the rich pay for it...but if its a heart transplant to save someone's life...then it should be equal for all (as long as they meet the requirements) .



Not necessarily. Wealthy people can afford to hire round-the-clock private physicians, nurses, and other specialists. They can afford to outfit their homes like state-of-the-art hospital suites and emergency rooms. This is what I'd call "luxury" or "concierge" health care. Middle-Americans like me can't afford it, nor do we rate it. I think our society should make providing adequate health care for all productive citizens a priority. The people I think don't deserve the best treatment are people like incorrigible drug addicts, career criminals... people that don't contribute positively to society and therefore shouldn't be allowed to benefit from it. I would still say that they deserve basic health care, but I darn sure wouldn't want someone like that ahead of me on an organ transplant list.

I still say - if people would be willing to auction off an organ, they should be allowed. Though for th elife of me, I can't think of any way to secure such a process to keep it from becoming rife with corruption, as has already been pointed out.

DamonX
Posted: Saturday, July 31, 2010 8:09:38 PM

Rank: Forum Guru

Joined: 1/25/2009
Posts: 795
MrNudiePants wrote:
DamonX wrote:


I agree that being successful should allow a more luxurious standard of life. But I don't see adaquate health care as a luxury. A working class middle-american should get the same care as a millionaire. Esecially in the case of organ transplantation where the comoditiy is in very high demand. Now, if you're talking about homeless people or drug addicts....well they would never be approved for organ transplant anyways.

A human organ is the most precious commodity that exists, and if the recipient is unable to respect that, then they don't deserve it. If its a skin transplant for cosmetic purposes then let the rich pay for it...but if its a heart transplant to save someone's life...then it should be equal for all (as long as they meet the requirements) .



Not necessarily. Wealthy people can afford to hire round-the-clock private physicians, nurses, and other specialists. They can afford to outfit their homes like state-of-the-art hospital suites and emergency rooms. This is what I'd call "luxury" or "concierge" health care. Middle-Americans like me can't afford it, nor do we rate it. I think our society should make providing adequate health care for all productive citizens a priority. The people I think don't deserve the best treatment are people like incorrigible drug addicts, career criminals... people that don't contribute positively to society and therefore shouldn't be allowed to benefit from it. I would still say that they deserve basic health care, but I darn sure wouldn't want someone like that ahead of me on an organ transplant list.

I still say - if people would be willing to auction off an organ, they should be allowed. Though for th elife of me, I can't think of any way to secure such a process to keep it from becoming rife with corruption, as has already been pointed out.


Not necessarily? What is this referring to? Re-read my post. I think you missed the word "should"

The things that you've mentioned are luxuries. And I have no problem with rich people paying for them. But these are different from matters of life and death....like organ transplant. I agree with your views regarding addicts and criminals...but so does the medical community. Those types of people do not get organs. There are very stringent conditions that must be met before a person is able to recieve an organ.
MrNudiePants
Posted: Sunday, August 01, 2010 7:41:49 AM

Rank: Forum Guru

Joined: 8/10/2009
Posts: 2,140
Location: United States
DamonX wrote:
MrNudiePants wrote:
DamonX wrote:


I agree that being successful should allow a more luxurious standard of life. But I don't see adaquate health care as a luxury. A working class middle-american should get the same care as a millionaire. Esecially in the case of organ transplantation where the comoditiy is in very high demand. Now, if you're talking about homeless people or drug addicts....well they would never be approved for organ transplant anyways.

A human organ is the most precious commodity that exists, and if the recipient is unable to respect that, then they don't deserve it. If its a skin transplant for cosmetic purposes then let the rich pay for it...but if its a heart transplant to save someone's life...then it should be equal for all (as long as they meet the requirements) .



Not necessarily. Wealthy people can afford to hire round-the-clock private physicians, nurses, and other specialists. They can afford to outfit their homes like state-of-the-art hospital suites and emergency rooms. This is what I'd call "luxury" or "concierge" health care. Middle-Americans like me can't afford it, nor do we rate it. I think our society should make providing adequate health care for all productive citizens a priority. The people I think don't deserve the best treatment are people like incorrigible drug addicts, career criminals... people that don't contribute positively to society and therefore shouldn't be allowed to benefit from it. I would still say that they deserve basic health care, but I darn sure wouldn't want someone like that ahead of me on an organ transplant list.

I still say - if people would be willing to auction off an organ, they should be allowed. Though for th elife of me, I can't think of any way to secure such a process to keep it from becoming rife with corruption, as has already been pointed out.


Not necessarily? What is this referring to? Re-read my post. I think you missed the word "should"

The things that you've mentioned are luxuries. And I have no problem with rich people paying for them. But these are different from matters of life and death....like organ transplant. I agree with your views regarding addicts and criminals...but so does the medical community. Those types of people do not get organs. There are very stringent conditions that must be met before a person is able to recieve an organ.



You wrote: "A working class middle-american should get the same care as a millionaire." This is a false statement. Wealthy people have a much greater access to health care that's outside the realm of what's provided to a working-class family due to cost. This is as it should be. Or would you argue that since a wealthy family can afford the things I mentioned, that those things should be provided for everyone?

Regardless - you're taking this discussion way off course from the original topic.

Dancing_Doll
Posted: Sunday, August 01, 2010 8:35:31 AM

Rank: Alpha Blonde

Joined: 2/17/2010
Posts: 6,234
Location: West Coast
MrNudiePants wrote:
DamonX wrote:
MrNudiePants wrote:
DamonX wrote:


I agree that being successful should allow a more luxurious standard of life. But I don't see adaquate health care as a luxury. A working class middle-american should get the same care as a millionaire. Esecially in the case of organ transplantation where the comoditiy is in very high demand. Now, if you're talking about homeless people or drug addicts....well they would never be approved for organ transplant anyways.

A human organ is the most precious commodity that exists, and if the recipient is unable to respect that, then they don't deserve it. If its a skin transplant for cosmetic purposes then let the rich pay for it...but if its a heart transplant to save someone's life...then it should be equal for all (as long as they meet the requirements) .



Not necessarily. Wealthy people can afford to hire round-the-clock private physicians, nurses, and other specialists. They can afford to outfit their homes like state-of-the-art hospital suites and emergency rooms. This is what I'd call "luxury" or "concierge" health care. Middle-Americans like me can't afford it, nor do we rate it. I think our society should make providing adequate health care for all productive citizens a priority. The people I think don't deserve the best treatment are people like incorrigible drug addicts, career criminals... people that don't contribute positively to society and therefore shouldn't be allowed to benefit from it. I would still say that they deserve basic health care, but I darn sure wouldn't want someone like that ahead of me on an organ transplant list.

I still say - if people would be willing to auction off an organ, they should be allowed. Though for th elife of me, I can't think of any way to secure such a process to keep it from becoming rife with corruption, as has already been pointed out.


Not necessarily? What is this referring to? Re-read my post. I think you missed the word "should"

The things that you've mentioned are luxuries. And I have no problem with rich people paying for them. But these are different from matters of life and death....like organ transplant. I agree with your views regarding addicts and criminals...but so does the medical community. Those types of people do not get organs. There are very stringent conditions that must be met before a person is able to recieve an organ.



You wrote: "A working class middle-american should get the same care as a millionaire." This is a false statement. Wealthy people have a much greater access to health care that's outside the realm of what's provided to a working-class family due to cost. This is as it should be. Or would you argue that since a wealthy family can afford the things I mentioned, that those things should be provided for everyone?

Regardless - you're taking this discussion way off course from the original topic.


I think you need to re-read his post yet again MNP. The questions you just asked are actually answered in his post directly above yours.
"Should" means something that not yet "IS", but "should be" in an ideal situation.
Using wealth for luxuries (such as you mentioned in earlier posts) is vastly different than using wealth to get priority or access to a life-saving operation (such as buying an organ). You cannot equate a luxury car to a life-saving operation. A poor person can live without a luxury car, but he cannot live without a vital organ.

And I don't think this is off-course from the original topic. We're talking about a rich person buying a kidney from a poor person. Even if this was legalized, not everyone will be able to afford buying a kidney. So what does that do to the current organ donor wait-lists? It will still create a system where the cash-paying millionaire will extend his lifespan based on his wealth, whereas the poor person will die because of his lack of it. In fact, he will probably die faster, as priority is given to the ones who are willing to pay for the organ. Is this ethical? That is definitely encompassed in the scope of this thread, in my opinion.


SweetPenny
Posted: Sunday, August 01, 2010 8:57:47 AM

Rank: Moderator

Joined: 6/15/2010
Posts: 1,271
Location: State of Confusion
Dancing_Doll wrote:
And I don't think this is off-course from the original topic. We're talking about a rich person buying a kidney from a poor person. Even if this was legalized, not everyone will be able to afford buying a kidney. So what does that do to the current organ donor wait-lists? It will still create a system where the cash-paying millionaire will extend his lifespan based on his wealth, whereas the poor person will die because of his lack of it. In fact, he will probably die faster, as priority is given to the ones who are willing to pay for the organ. Is this ethical? That is definitely encompassed in the scope of this thread, in my opinion.


Perhaps a solution would be to legalize the sale of kidneys, but the sale should be taxed, and the taxes should go toward purchasing kidneys for those who cannot afford one.

Yes. It is not "fair" that the rich would be able to afford to buy kidneys and the poor won't; however, should the government really have the authority to tell us that we cannot save our own lives by paying money we've earned to a willing seller of an extra kidney?
Dancing_Doll
Posted: Sunday, August 01, 2010 9:48:07 AM

Rank: Alpha Blonde

Joined: 2/17/2010
Posts: 6,234
Location: West Coast
SweetPenny wrote:
Dancing_Doll wrote:
And I don't think this is off-course from the original topic. We're talking about a rich person buying a kidney from a poor person. Even if this was legalized, not everyone will be able to afford buying a kidney. So what does that do to the current organ donor wait-lists? It will still create a system where the cash-paying millionaire will extend his lifespan based on his wealth, whereas the poor person will die because of his lack of it. In fact, he will probably die faster, as priority is given to the ones who are willing to pay for the organ. Is this ethical? That is definitely encompassed in the scope of this thread, in my opinion.


Perhaps a solution would be to legalize the sale of kidneys, but the sale should be taxed, and the taxes should go toward purchasing kidneys for those who cannot afford one.

Yes. It is not "fair" that the rich would be able to afford to buy kidneys and the poor won't; however, should the government really have the authority to tell us that we cannot save our own lives by paying money we've earned to a willing seller of an extra kidney?


I often think there is a tendency to think about "us" and "them" when talking about topics like this. We assume that it's more of a situation where we would be able to afford a kidney but the 'welfare' recipient or unemployed lazy guy would not. But wealth is all on a continuum. If the market price for legally sold kidneys was $1 Million (which is below cost according to those eBay ads), then I'd wager to say that without major financing, most of us would not be able to afford it. So if you're currently on the wait-list and getting bumped further and further down because all the other wealthy millionaires were buying what's available and getting first priority for transplants, regardless of the level of critical need, then wouldn't it make you feel like the system was unfair?

Currently you get bumped on the list based on how well your organ is functioning, with priority given to those that are in the most dire need. If that hard-working middle-class person who really needs the kidney but doesn't have $1 Million to spare gets passed over, and a millionaire with a moderate-functioning kidney walks in and decides to pay the price-tag in order to do an early upgrade and ends up getting the operation.... Is that still fair?

I think some people will say yes, others with say no... but it will probably depend more on where they stand on the wealth continuum than concerns about government authority.

On a personal level, the law of self-preservation is a strong one. If I needed a kidney and a new one cost $40K, then I'd be all for organ-sales. If a new kidney cost $1Million, and now I had to wait even longer to get one... then I'd probably be pissed off. It's just human nature.



MrNudiePants
Posted: Sunday, August 01, 2010 2:01:36 PM

Rank: Forum Guru

Joined: 8/10/2009
Posts: 2,140
Location: United States
Dancing_Doll wrote:


I often think there is a tendency to think about "us" and "them" when talking about topics like this. We assume that it's more of a situation where we would be able to afford a kidney but the 'welfare' recipient or unemployed lazy guy would not. But wealth is all on a continuum. If the market price for legally sold kidneys was $1 Million (which is below cost according to those eBay ads), then I'd wager to say that without major financing, most of us would not be able to afford it. So if you're currently on the wait-list and getting bumped further and further down because all the other wealthy millionaires were buying what's available and getting first priority for transplants, regardless of the level of critical need, then wouldn't it make you feel like the system was unfair?

Currently you get bumped on the list based on how well your organ is functioning, with priority given to those that are in the most dire need. If that hard-working middle-class person who really needs the kidney but doesn't have $1 Million to spare gets passed over, and a millionaire with a moderate-functioning kidney walks in and decides to pay the price-tag in order to do an early upgrade and ends up getting the operation.... Is that still fair?

I think some people will say yes, others with say no... but it will probably depend more on where they stand on the wealth continuum than concerns about government authority.

On a personal level, the law of self-preservation is a strong one. If I needed a kidney and a new one cost $40K, then I'd be all for organ-sales. If a new kidney cost $1Million, and now I had to wait even longer to get one... then I'd probably be pissed off. It's just human nature.


If my son or daughter needed a kidney, and I could choose to donate one of mine, or choose not to donate, which would I choose? That said, if I'm an organ donor, I can have a living will that would stipulate that ALL of my organs are to go to the neediest patients first, not just those with the capability to pay a million plus. Or, my living will could stipulate that one kidney should be sold, with the proceeds going to my family, while the other kidney would be donated to charity. Really - if your organs could be sold after your death, and the resultant income be given to your family as an inheritance, can you just IMAGINE the wealth of organ donors we would suddenly have??

Guest
Posted: Sunday, August 01, 2010 3:11:00 PM

Rank: Lurker

Joined: 12/1/2006
Posts: 531,823
Quote:
Really - if your organs could be sold after your death, and the resultant income be given to your family as an inheritance, can you just IMAGINE the wealth of organ donors we would suddenly have??


Especially if there's a lot of hospital bills to pay off. What a burden to be lifted off of your family knowing that you could pay your own bills even in death. Although in some cases the organs can't be harvested. Depends on cause of death.
SweetPenny
Posted: Sunday, August 01, 2010 4:07:36 PM

Rank: Moderator

Joined: 6/15/2010
Posts: 1,271
Location: State of Confusion
Dancing_Doll wrote:
Currently you get bumped on the list based on how well your organ is functioning, with priority given to those that are in the most dire need. If that hard-working middle-class person who really needs the kidney but doesn't have $1 Million to spare gets passed over, and a millionaire with a moderate-functioning kidney walks in and decides to pay the price-tag in order to do an early upgrade and ends up getting the operation.... Is that still fair?

I think some people will say yes, others with say no... but it will probably depend more on where they stand on the wealth continuum than concerns about government authority.

On a personal level, the law of self-preservation is a strong one. If I needed a kidney and a new one cost $40K, then I'd be all for organ-sales. If a new kidney cost $1Million, and now I had to wait even longer to get one... then I'd probably be pissed off. It's just human nature.


Where I live, people buy illegal kidneys for about $100k. The "donor" gets about $10k of that. I've always thought the price is overinflated because it is illegal and therefore risky. To me, this means that there are people who are willing to sell their kidneys for $10k. So if kidney-selling becomes legal, then we can cut out the middleman who is making the bulk of the $100k. And us regular Joes can buy kidneys for a reasonable price. The really poor people will still suffer (as they do now anyway), but countless lives will be saved.
mercianknight
Posted: Monday, August 02, 2010 8:24:05 AM

Rank: Forum Guru

Joined: 8/11/2009
Posts: 2,029
Location: whispering conspiratorially in your ear, Bermuda
chefkathleen wrote:
Quote:
Really - if your organs could be sold after your death, and the resultant income be given to your family as an inheritance, can you just IMAGINE the wealth of organ donors we would suddenly have??


Especially if there's a lot of hospital bills to pay off. What a burden to be lifted off of your family knowing that you could pay your own bills even in death. Although in some cases the organs can't be harvested. Depends on cause of death.


This gets my vote.

"Whoa, lady, I only speak two languages, English and bad English." - Korben Dallas, from The Fifth Element

"If history repeats itself, and the unexpected always happens, how incapable must man be of learning from experience?" - George Bernard Shaw
LadyX
Posted: Monday, August 02, 2010 8:59:49 AM

Rank: Artistic Tart

Joined: 9/25/2009
Posts: 4,827
chefkathleen wrote:
Quote:
Really - if your organs could be sold after your death, and the resultant income be given to your family as an inheritance, can you just IMAGINE the wealth of organ donors we would suddenly have??


Especially if there's a lot of hospital bills to pay off. What a burden to be lifted off of your family knowing that you could pay your own bills even in death. Although in some cases the organs can't be harvested. Depends on cause of death.


No kidding, guys. Makes you wonder why that's not an option already.
DamonX
Posted: Monday, August 02, 2010 9:13:18 PM

Rank: Forum Guru

Joined: 1/25/2009
Posts: 795
chefkathleen wrote:
Quote:
Really - if your organs could be sold after your death, and the resultant income be given to your family as an inheritance, can you just IMAGINE the wealth of organ donors we would suddenly have??


Especially if there's a lot of hospital bills to pay off. What a burden to be lifted off of your family knowing that you could pay your own bills even in death. Although in some cases the organs can't be harvested. Depends on cause of death.


Because somebody else that needs it is probably going to die because they can't afford to pay for it.

I hate to use slippery slope arguments, but if capitalism is injected into the organ donation system, then a person's life becomes of less value if their family can make a profit after death. Especially in the case of organs like hearts and livers, where the donor needs to be alive to have them harvested. Your're also going to have doctors and hospitals making a profit from people dying and not living.

I have no problem with families getting paid for having a relative donating an organ after death...but it should be bought by the government at a set price and given to the most deserving recipient and not the most wealthy. This would help to eliminate the selfish and usually religious-driven intent of most family members who deny the donation of their relatives organs to someone who might actually need them to live.

I think that with a decent health care system though...there should be no medical bills to be paid off after a patient dies. But...that's getting back to another thread.....
MrNudiePants
Posted: Tuesday, August 03, 2010 7:18:47 AM

Rank: Forum Guru

Joined: 8/10/2009
Posts: 2,140
Location: United States
Actually, the doctors and hospitals aren't going to make their money from the people who are dying - that's going to COST them money as they pay for the deceased person's organs. They're going to make their money from the recipients and their insurance companies who are going to foot the bills. And the government should set the price and regulate the industry because we know there's no corruption in government, right? Besides which - why should those selfish relatives have any say in what happens to the bodies of their loved ones? No, I believe you're right. Let's just let the government make all of our decisions for us, even beyond death.

In a perfect world, there would be no medical bills to pay off, no funeral costs, no credit notes or mortgages to be handled. So in a perfect world, when someone died, it would be the end of it. The people he left behind would have no worries. Too bad we don't live in a perfect world.

DamonX
Posted: Tuesday, August 03, 2010 7:04:02 PM

Rank: Forum Guru

Joined: 1/25/2009
Posts: 795
Quote:
Actually, the doctors and hospitals aren't going to make their money from the people who are dying - that's going to COST them money as they pay for the deceased person's organs. They're going to make their money from the recipients and their insurance companies who are going to foot the bills.


You're really grasping at any way to disagree with me huh? The hospitals will make make money off the deaths of people. The fact that I didn't outline the steps involved in the money making process has no consequence on this discussion. Let's avoid this type of semantic nit-picking shall we?

Quote:
And the government should set the price and regulate the industry because we know there's no corruption in government, right? Besides which - why should those selfish relatives have any say in what happens to the bodies of their loved ones? No, I believe you're right. Let's just let the government make all of our decisions for us, even beyond death.


I never said that the government should force people to donate. Just provide a set-priced cash incentive.

Quote:
In a perfect world, there would be no medical bills to pay off, no funeral costs, no credit notes or mortgages to be handled. So in a perfect world, when someone died, it would be the end of it. The people he left behind would have no worries. Too bad we don't live in a perfect world.


Well, I never mentioned anything about mortgages or funeral costs. I mentioned medical bills. And it doesn't take a perfect world to eliminate medical bills for remaining family members. Many other countries in the developed world do it. But..that discussion belongs on the Health Care thread.

I'm just waiting for you to find something in the A-bomb thread to disagree with me about. icon_smile
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