I carry a donor card. Or to be more precise I have carried several and lost several. But well…its the thought that counts.
My views have changed over the years.
Like everyone I have had reason to be grateful to doctors, nurses…both for myself and for my family. And like everyone I have had reason to think that the care afforded to me and my family has not been good enough.
I have always had a healthy or perhaps I mean unhealthy skepticism of the medical “profession”. Liking or being grateful to individual doctors does not extend to me having any affection at all for their profession.
Doubly so when RESEARCH is involved.
I dont mind people having a vocation.
I dont mind people having a profession.
Confusing the two…thats something that I DO mind.
Thirty odd years ago I would not have carried a donor card. My aversion to the medical profession…wrongly…trumped all other consideations such as LIFE itself.
The medical profession has changed. It is more mercenary.
But I have changed over thirty years.
A wife and two children will do that to you.
And so will daughters-in-law. And grandchildren.
And real friends.
So that the faces that we see in news programmes underscoring the plight of people…children especially…who need urgent transplants…become the faces of people for whom I care deeply.
So I carry a donor card…in the sense that it and its predecessors are at the bottom of a drawer somewhere in this house.
So I mean well.
Yet I worry that the decision of the Welsh Assembly to pass a law where “consent” is implied, unless there is evidence to the contrary seems a step too far and mit even be counter productive.
For me the wishes of the bereaved…the living …takes precedence over the wishes of their deceased relative. And frankly takes precedence over the wishes of the family that NEEDS the heart, liver, kidney etc.
The scenario where a doctor is in confrontation with a relative over the implied consent of a recently deceased relative does not appeal to me.
And the seeming assurances of the medical profession to not assure me at all.
It is of course a Welsh decision.
It will not apply in Norn Iron. And unlikely ever to apply.
I admire those (Joe Brolly springs to mind) who very much alive donated a kidney to a friend.
In extreme cases I would probably do the same. So would you.
But the point is that ORGAN DONATION is a good thing. A very good thing.
Humanity at its highest.
But GRABBING an organ is entirely different.