Oragan Transplants Essay, Research Paper
Now you have to realize that we are in a no win situation with the issue of organ transplants. It isn t fair, and there is no way we can make it completely fair until there are enough organs available to satisfy the demand for them. Some people are just not going to receive a transplant, and there is nothing we can do about that right now. Dividing people into three classifications, and listing them according to that, will maximize the efficiency by which we distribute our limited supply of organs, and minimize the loses we are incurring because of the organ shortage.
Some would say this system is not fair to the people on the secondary and tertiary lists, because if the primary list is big enough to use all of the available organs, then the people on the other lists will most likely die. Well, people are dying anyway while waiting for organs, and yes it is unfair that people have to die, but it is even more unfair when somebody dies who needs a new liver through no fault of their own, and an alcoholic who has boozed their life away, takes that liver and lives. Who in their sober right mind would call that fair?
Who has the right to judge which people die or not? You and I are not some god-like figure, so we don t have the right to do that. I would completely agree with these critics about nobody have the right to judge other people, but these lists are not judging anybody. By choosing to participate in certain activities, or not, people are ultimately deciding their own placement on these lists. They aren t be judged by anybody, just categorized by their lifestyles. In other words, people would simply be taking responsibility for their actions. If one chooses to get consume large amounts of alcoholic beverages every night until they need a new liver, then that is their own choice, and they should pay the consequences for it. If it means death, so be it. They had their chance with life, and they chose to drink it away. Next please. Why should they be offered a second chance when they blew their first one, and would be taking away from somebody else? People who have a disease they are born with have no control over their unfortunate situation, and therefore there is no reason why they shouldn t be given a shot at life, just like everybody else. That is fair.
Some could also feel that these lists would be racist or discriminate against poor people, because wealthier white people would be able to pay a good attorney to keep them out of prison, or pay for rehab, etc. Our current system already favors wealthier citizens, perhaps even more than the lists would. We have to place faith in our justice system, and hope that the guilty will be convicted; regardless of how much money they have in the bank. There would be no racism involved in the lists at all. Where would a white have an advantage over a black, or a black over a white? None of the qualifications for a certain classification have anything to do with skin color.
These concerns would simply not be an issue if organs were in sufficient supply. The only true solution to the problem is to increase the supply of organs. People need to be educated about the proper procedure for organ donation, and need to be clued-up on the fact that organs are in such high demand, and that there are not enough to go around. For example, some people don t know that you have to alert your next of kin to your wishes about donation, and as a result, a lot of potential donors don t end up donating. There has also been talk of some sort of financial incentive, maybe in the form a funeral credit, to help encourage donation.
Our current system of organ distribution is inefficient, and can be changed to make things more effective by implementing what I call The three list policy . People would be classified into one of three lists; primary, secondary, and tertiary. The secondary list would include people who need a transplant through some fault of their own (such as alcohol or drug abuse), and people who will be bed ridden after their transplant couldn t continue with their normal life functions. The tertiary list should include people who have been convicted and sentenced to life in prison, and those who have a terminally ill disease, such as some forms of cancer, or HIV/AIDS. This leaves everybody else on the primary list, which is the first list to be looked at, and satisfied. Once all the people on the primary list receive their organs the secondary list can be looked at, and so on. This ensures that the organs are being utilized to their maximum potential.
With medical advances, people can be kept alive longer while waiting for a transplant. Organs are better matched to recipients and new techniques and drugs make rejection less of a concern than in the past. The waiting list for organs is only going to keep growing, and we need to do something about it, or watch our fellow Americans die while waiting for organs. People need to be educated about donation, incentives to donate should be offered, and the three list system can help maximize the distribution of organs until the supply meets the demand. We, as a big family, need to pull together to help solve this problem, even though it may seem impossible. As Christopher Reeve says, America has a tradition that many nations probably envy. We frequently achieve the impossible. But that’s part of our national character. That’s what got us from one coast to another. That’s what got us the largest economy in the world. That’s what got us to the moon. And that is what will help us conquer the organ shortage.