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Friday, November 26, 2010

Friday Facts

I have taken the liberty of gently lifting some facts coloured with opinion on this subject from a website I found called "Kidney Mama".  Sometime people have already said something as well as you could ever hope to so why re-invent the wheel right?
  • There is no kidney shortage. We have about 300 million excess kidneys in this country (Note from LH:  She is talking the US but we can scale it down for us Canucks) walking around in people who think that donating a kidney is a huge surgical undertaking (it isn’t) and doesn’t make that much difference because people can survive just fine on dialysis (they can’t).
  • Organ donor cards will never solve the kidney shortage, because very few kidneys from deceased donors are usable. Until we can grow kidneys in a lab, living donation is the only viable option, no pun intended, for retiring “the list.”
  • The medical profession needs to wrap its brain around non related donors and find a way to make the donation process more accessible to them. Do outreach to encourage living donation! (Read more about the reasons for the medical community’s discomfort with stranger donors in this Wall Street Journal piece from 2007.)(Note from LH:  We are actually much more medically open here in Canada although I do believe more steps could be taken to make people aware that it is an option here.  I do understand though why the medical community is leery of taking a perfectly healthy person and removing their kidney-it does go against their oath to a degree))
  • It is ludicrous and unethical to let thousands of people die each year for lack of a kidney because it is supposedly wrong to compensate donors. Countries that legally compensate donors have no waiting list.(Note from LH:  I don't think I should be paid money for the kidney itself but costs like travel etc should be paid by the healthcare system, insurance or the government)
  • It is not theoretically possible to save someone’s life for “the wrong reasons.” It is always the right decision to save someone’s life if you can.
  • Kidney donors are not superhuman heroes. “Hero” puts a person on a pedestal as different, and lets people avoid considering that they could do what that person did. Kidney donors are ordinary people who were bold enough to step up and do something truly loving and obvious. Of course one should save another’s life. Of course.
So there you go.

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