Essay Organ Donation And The Ethical Issues Surrounding It

1956 Words Nov 18th, 2015 8 Pages
Organ donation, and the ethical issues surrounding it, has become a topic of discussion in recent years. Most ethical issues involve patients and family, but it can also affect nurses and physicians. The article Organ Donation after Circulatory Death, the authors highlight the ethical dilemmas of organ donation due to “non-heart beating” death. In such cases the patient must die within 60 minutes after being removed from life support to be eligible for organ donation. With the shortage of organs available for donation, the criteria to consider a body for donation has changed from “brain death” to “circulatory death”, making organs available sooner. This change in practice has caused ethical dilemmas among the healthcare environment. In a “2006 study found that some perioperative nurses did not accept the irreversibility of cardiac death” (37). A nurse is trained to save lives, and this practice goes against that notion. A nurse must set aside her own personal views and help the family exercise their right to the choices that they made in accordance with their own values, goals and priorities. According to hospital policies the most important goal is care for the dying patient while avoiding actions that may harm the patient in the process of preserving organs for donation. Beach, Hallett, and Zaruca (2011) stated that clinicians have raised ethical concerns towards organs donations because they feel the OR has transformed “from a traditional place of healing and hope…

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