All French Citizens Are Now Automatic Organ Donors Upon Death

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All French Citizens Are Now Automatic Organ Donors Upon Death Skyline College Surgical Technology The Skyline View / Flickr cc

French citizens are now automatic organ donors after they pass away. France has reversed its organ donations policy, making all its citizens donors upon death unless they officially register to opt out.

The newly ousted law presumes consent for the removal of organs. This is regardless if the family agrees or not.

According to The Guardian, when the legislation took effect, unless the person who passed away had previously expressed a clear wish against donation, doctors were required to ask the relatives. However, about one-third of those asked have refused.

Meanwhile, those who do not wish to donate their organs upon death must input their names on a “refusal register.” So far, about 150,000 people have signed up. The France government has promised to make the process easier by allowing those who refuse to register online.

Don d’organes et de tissus explained the process on Facebook, saying those opposed to have their organs donated could leave a signed document with their family. They can also transmit their wish orally to relatives, who must make a written declaration of non-consent to doctors at the time of death.

French Citizens Encouraged To Donate Organs

Back in November, the French Agence de la Biomédecine released a film titled Déjà-vu2. The film encourages 15 to 25-year-olds to agree to donate their organs.

In line with that, the European Union also emphasized the lack of organs for transplant. Thus, the list of patients on waiting lists worldwide increases every year.

In 2014, the EU noted that 86,000 people were waiting for organ donations in its states, Turkey, and Norway. Every day, due to the lack of organs, 16 people die while waiting for transplants.

NHSBT, the agency responsible for matching and allocating donor organs and for the NHS organ donor register, is now considering further steps to approach families to ensure more potential donors.