Foreign countries urged to adopt Denmark’s policy on organ donation for all adults

The Danish government is considering a new law that would make all citizens organ donors by default, unless they explicitly opt-out. Currently, only those who have separately registered for organ donation are on the list. If the change goes through, Danes would need to declare their intention not to donate their organs after death. This change would bring Denmark in line with many European countries, where it is assumed that the deceased is a potential organ donor unless they have specifically declined during their lifetime.

Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen has stated that the purpose of this change is to increase the number of available organs for transplant, as there are currently over 400 Danes on the waiting list for a new organ. The government emphasizes that people will always have the option to remove themselves from the list and that relatives of the deceased can also decide whether or not to use their organs.

However, there has been opposition to this proposal from the Danish Ethics Council, which recommends against changing current policy regarding organ donation. They argue that individuals’ right to decide about their own bodies is an important principle in healthcare and that there are no significant differences between countries in terms of organ donations regardless of whether people are automatically organ donors or not.

The Danish government has stated that it does not intend to force this proposal through but wants to spark a broad discussion on the matter. Last year, 113 Danes donated their organs after death, and Foreign Minister Lars Løkke Rasmussen pointed out that about two-thirds of Danes have already indicated whether they want their organs used or not. The government believes that by making everyone a default organ donor, it will encourage more people to make an active decision about organ donation.

By Editor

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