Friday, November 28, 2003

Organ retrieval practices tightened up in UK.

As reported in London's Financial Times, "The UK government is to tighten up the rules governing the removal of organs and tissues after death. . . . The legislation, announced in the Queens' speech on Wednesday, will make consent the fundamental principle governing organ removal and set up an an authority with over-arching power to regulate transplantation, anatomical examination, post mortem studies and the use of human tissue in education and research." The article explains that consent has been required since 1994, "but that has not prevented abuses":
As many as 20,000 brains were illegally removed and kept by doctors without the consent of parents in the 1970s 80s and 90s at Alder Hey children's hospital in Liverpool while thymus glands were given to a pharmaceutical company in exchange for cash.

The harrowing events at Alder Hey led to some parents having to conduct up to four funerals as organs from their children were returned at different times.
posted by tommayo, 3:25 PM

Health care law (including public health law, medical ethics, and life sciences), with digressions into constitutional law, poetry, and other things that matter