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Should organ donation become the norm in the US?

January 01, 2019 - 3:30 am
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By Amy E. Feldman, Judge Technology Solutions

PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) — Iceland has a new way to sign people up for the organ donor list. 

A new law in Iceland goes into effect this month in which, rather than registering to be an organ donor, citizens are automatically organ donors unless they opt out of donation. 

Under U.S. law, a person has to opt in to donate his or her organs, or they will not be donated. Studies show people have a basic fear that organ donation will be like a Monty Python scene, where a mortician calling, "Bring out your dead," will be given the body of a person arguing, "I'm not dead yet." 

That's one of the reasons why 20 people die every day waiting for a transplant. And it's completely wrong — organ donation is one of the most legally regulated medical procedures. 

By law, the transplant can't be done until a physician who is not a part of the transplant process confirms the death. 

There's been discussion of changing U.S. law from an opt-in to an opt=out system like Iceland, but for now, we have to rely on people deciding on their own that saving others is the bright side of life.