To: Australian Federal and State Ministers for Health
Australia has some of the lowest rates of organ donation in the world. This means that hundreds of children and adults many people on waiting lists miss out on life-saving organs.
One organ and tissue donor can transform the lives of 10 or more people.
Currently there are 1600 people currently on organ donation waiting lists.
While many Australians support the concept of organ donation, when confronted with the decision, often during a time of crisis, less than 60 per cent of families give consent for organ and tissue donation to proceed.
We firmly believe that Australia's 'opt-in' system for donating organ is cumbersome, difficult to register and places the onus on family members - who are grieving the often sudden loss of a loved one - to make a decision. We believe that Australia should adopt, as many other countries already have, an 'opt-out' or presumed consent system which means doctors are allowed to assume that the organs of a deceased patient can be used for transplant unless the patient or his/her family have made a request to the contrary.
A potential donor or his/her relatives must take specific action to be excluded from organ donation, rather than take specific action to be included.
This would significantly increase the number of organs available for transplant and go in some part to reducing the stress of grieving families
This petition closed over 1 year ago
Australia has an extremely low rate of organ donation. According to the International Registry of Organ Donation & Transplantation, Australia is currently ranked 17th in the world. Countries with...
Australia has an extremely low rate of organ donation. According to the International Registry of Organ Donation & Transplantation, Australia is currently ranked 17th in the world. Countries with a higher organ donation ranking such as Spain, Belgium, France, Norway, and Italy all have "presumed consent" laws on organ donation, where everyone is considered a donor unless they specify otherwise.
In contrast Australia and USA and Finland practice an 'opt in' consent law where their citizens provide express and informed agreement to donate organs and tissues in the event of their death.
About 1600 Australians are on waiting lists, waiting for a phone-call that a life-saving gift of a vital organ is available for donation. And yet while around 80 per cent of Australians are generally willing to become organ and tissue donors, less than 60 per cent of families give consent for organ and tissue donation to proceed.
Under current legislation the family will always be asked to confirm the donation wishes of a deceased patient before the donation can proceed.
Australia has a world-class reputation for successful transplant outcomes, for survival rates of the recipients and in the number of organs that are able to be transplanted from each donor. One organ and tissue donor can transform the lives of 10 or more people.
Transplantation has dramatically improved the lives of recipients and enabled them to be active, healthy members of the community. There are significant cost benefits to transplants when compared with the ongoing cost of treatment for people requiring transplants.
It is time for Australia to take a serious look at its current 'opt-in' system and consider changing legislation to an 'opt-out' or presumed consent system. The current 'opt-in' system is not only cumbersome to register but also allows family members to not allow organ donation to occur, even if the patient wanted to donate their organs once they have passed away.
An opt-out or presumed consent will mean people who feel strongly against organ donation can nominate not to donate their organs.
Too many people live lives that are made more difficult due to illness and too many people die before receiving donated organs.I have decided to circulate this petition after watching the ABC 4 Corners program regarding Australia organ donation system aired on Monday April 8th 2013.
I have no vested interest in this matter, I am not aware of anyone who requires a donation nor am I involved in any way with organisations that are active in this area. It just seems to me that this solution provides a good common sense way of increasing organ donation rates in this country.
Please note that the following website is from the Australian Government Agency in control of Organ Donation and that this organisation has not endorsed in any way this petition.
More information on organ donation in Australia is available at:http://www.donatelife.gov.au/