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Organ donation

What is the current situation in Germany?
Carmen Lobitz
Organ donation
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Organs and tissues can be donated by living people, called „the donors“. However, most organs and tissues are donated after the donor has died (post mortem). Right now, over 9,000 patients are waiting for organs (according to the “Bundeszentrale für gesundheitliche Aufklärung”).

Most of the recipients need a kidney, or multiple organs simultaneously. However, in 2019 only 932 people were organ donors. This means 11.2 organ donations for each million German citizens. Thus, Germany has one of the lowest rates of organ donation in Europe. Statistically speaking, every eight hours someone dies due to the lack of a donated organ.

How is the organ donation regulated in Germany?

Citizens choose to fill-in an organ donor card, with the option to fully or partially agree, completely disagree and to delegate all decisions to another person (e.g. a family member or a close friend who`s contact-information is then required). Alternatives to carrying a completed organ donor card are to write a will referring to organ donation on a piece of paper, or to fill out a living-will

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