Canada currently operates under an “Opt-In” system for organ donation. That means that you have to sign up to put yourself on your province’s list of willing organ donors. However, in a move that puts Nova Scotia first among jurisdictions in North America, the province’s legislature has passed a bill for an “Opt-Out” system also known as “Presumed Consent.” It is routinely said that greater than 80 percent of Canadians are in favour of organ donation, but fewer than 20 percent actually go through the process of registering as a donor or “opting in” to the registry.
Here is an opinion article by Michael Enright, host of the CBC Radio show Sunday Morning that discusses the impact Nova Scotia’s decision can make on Canada’s “pathetic” record for organ donation. I invite your comments.
Let us bow our heads in gratitude and raise a glass to the province of Nova Scotia. Impossible to do at the same time, I grant you, but give it a shot.
A grateful nation has many reasons to thank Nova Scotia: the landscape, Pier 21, the people, lobster, Bob Stanfield, Lunenburg and Joe Howe.
The latest contribution of the Bluenose province to the betterment of mankind came this week when the provincial government introduced a bill to make every Nova Scotian an automatic organ donor.
When the bill becomes law, Nova Scotia will become the first jurisdiction in North America to operate a donor system known as presumed consent.
Under this system, everyone is considered willing to donate an organ unless he or she makes the determination to opt out.
It is used in 20 European countries and has led to an increase in organ donations and transplants.
‘Pathetic’ Canadian donation record
It couldn’t come at a better time. In terms of donation, Canada’s record is pathetic.
While more than 80 per cent of us say we believe in donation, only 20 per cent of us have made plans.
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