Wednesday, 4 September 2013

Benefits of Live Donation

A heart-warming story about an 'altruistic' (or live) kidney donor receiving a letter of thanks from the family she helped here. It's good to see donation get regular good press, rather than only being covered when there are scandals.

For the record, the scare quotes round 'altruistic' in the first sentence are not intended to question Ms Pretty's obvious altruism; rather, I find it odd that live donors who donate to strangers (rather than relatives) are referred to as 'altruistic donors', given the commonplace belief that all donations should be altruistic - a reasoning which is often appealed to in order to resist incentives for donors.

If you're interested in this issue, there's a nice piece by Greg Moorlock discussing the altruism requirement in the Journal of Medical Ethics (open access). The next meeting of the RSE project, on Saturday 14th September, will focus on incentives and inducements, so look out for further posts on that theme.

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