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Organ donation proposals split medical establishment

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Opinion is split among intensive care doctors over government proposals to drastically alter organ donation laws.

The suggestion of an opt out system relying on presumed consent has been met by a mixed reaction from doctors, in a survey by the Intensive Care Society.

Everyone would be a potential donor under the proposed new law, unless they specifically requested that their organs were not used after death.

There are concerns that this system will alienate those who feel it is their right to choose, rather than having the decision forced upon them.

Dr Carl Waldmann, president of the Intensive Care Society, believes this will be an issue of huge significance. ‘It is a big change to what we are doing now…a big cultural difference,’ he said.

‘It has to be implemented in the right way,’ he added. ‘The issue will be sensitive to a lot of people and decisions must not be made before thorough negotiations and consultation with medical staff, experts and the general public.’

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