The Ethics of Donation after Cardiac Death
The debate continues on the ethics of donating organs after cardiac death. How do we make sure patients do not suffer or that their dying is prolonged? When is someone truly dead, meaning that their organs can be used for transplant? David Magnus of the Stanford Center for Biomedical Ethics suggests how donation after cardiac death may be a great good if done correctly. He recommends using the Institute of Medicine standard of five minutes after declaration of death for procurement of organs, which involves a system of checks, a mandatory ethics consort and sufficient consultation with the dying patient’s family.