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Recent Decrease in Organ Donation from Brain-Dead Potential Organ Donors in Korea and Possible Causes

Title
Recent Decrease in Organ Donation from Brain-Dead Potential Organ Donors in Korea and Possible Causes
Authors
Park, JinKim, Claire Junga
Ewha Authors
김정아박진
SCOPUS Author ID
김정아scopus
Issue Date
2020
Journal Title
JOURNAL OF KOREAN MEDICAL SCIENCE
ISSN
1011-8934JCR Link

1598-6357JCR Link
Citation
JOURNAL OF KOREAN MEDICAL SCIENCE vol. 35, no. 13
Keywords
Brain DeathEthicsFamilyOrgan DonorOrgan Transplantation
Publisher
KOREAN ACAD MEDICAL SCIENCES
Indexed
SCIE; SCOPUS; KCI WOS scopus
Document Type
Article
Abstract
Background: In 1999, the Organ Transplantation Act legalized organ donation from brain-dead patients. As a result of the government's continued efforts, the number of brain-dead donors steadily increased from 2002 through 2016. However, the number has declined since 2017. This paper examined the possible reasons behind the decline in brain-dead organ donation. Methods: This investigation was an analysis of published data from the Korea Organ Donation Agency annual reports from 2013 to 2018. Results: The number of brain-dead organ donors in Korea rose steadily until 2016, declined in 2017 for the first time since 2002, and then dropped sharply in 2018. Although the number of brain-dead potential organ donors increased between 2017 and 2018, the number of eligible donors decreased, suggesting that patient families rejected the brain-death determination process and brain-dead organ donation. Statistics gathered during identification of brain-dead potential donors and actual donations confirm that rejection or withdrawal of consent by the family has increased. During the same period when donation from brain- dead patients decreased, five events occurred: 1) compensation for donor families was abolished; 2) an incident of mistreatment of a brain-dead donor's remains occurred; 3) the Life-Sustaining Treatment Act was enacted, providing a legal procedure whereby families of brain-dead patients could forgo life-sustaining treatment; 4) residents' work week was limited to 80 hours; and 5) the Labor Standards Law was amended. Conclusion: Fewer eligible donors in spite ofan increase in brain-dead potential organ donors suggests that reduction in these donations resulted mainly from factors associated with family consent. Among such factors, implementation of the Life-sustaining Treatment Act appears to be most important. Abolition of family compensation and the incident in which a brain-dead donor's remains were mistreated may also have influenced family consent.
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DOI
10.3346/jkms.2020.35.e94
Appears in Collections:
의과대학 > 의학과 > Journal papers
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