In the past week, MSPs have approved a system in which people in Scotland have to opt out of organ donation. This means that people in Scotland will automatically be an organ donor until they state they no longer wish to be. It is hoped this will result in a higher number of available organs for transplant.
But a significant issue exists around the ethics of this system. Those who oppose the system would argue that once we are dead, our organs essentially belong to the state. The state would decide what happens to them, where they go and who receives them. Furthermore, for people who do not have the capacity to decide to opt out, there would be a significant amount of uncertainty for their families about what the person would have done. In dealing with the death of a relative, this would mean those families would face additional stress and trauma at an already difficult time.
However, at least in my opinion, the benefits of introducing this system outweigh the arguments against it. There are so many people waiting for organ transplants but there are not enough donors. The introduction of this system could lead to more lives being saved as more organs become available. In addition, organs are usually either buried or cremated when a person dies; those organs could have been used to save a person’s life instead of being burned or put into the ground.
As someone who is already an organ donor, I am aware of the vital importance of a transplant for so many people. Once I have passed away, I will no longer have any need for my organs; if I can save even one person’s life, it will absolutely be worth it.
I truly believe that organ donation is so important, as it literally saves people’s lives. The opt out system, in my opinion, has huge potential to help so many of the people waiting for a transplant. It will, at least, give them some hope for the future.
What do you think?