Re: Changing attitudes, improving lives
We fully support the view that strategies to improve education and public awareness to change attitudes to organ donation is key.
Erin Walker eloquently describes how the privilege of receiving an organ transplant has allowed her to experience and enjoy many of life's rites of passage. She treats her recipient organs, and therefore the donors, with respect by honouring 'transplant anniversaries'. And they in turn are present at, and share in, her significant life events.
Remembering them in this way shows us that organ donation is not simply a transactional give/take process: the donor can be thought of as taking on the role of 'guardian' for someone in need. They might become a guardian of the heartbeat, a guardian of the breath, a guardian of the water or a guardian of sight. Whereas others leave and live on only in the memories of those who knew them, the guardian donor chooses to remain and lives on in this world.
The opt-out system may or may not increase the number of organs available for transplantation, but the main intent (and benefit) would be to allow greater opportunity for life, love & happiness - for oneself after death.
Competing interests: No competing interests