Belgium: Controversial Organ Donation | European Journal | DW | 06.07.2012
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European Journal

Belgium: Controversial Organ Donation

Last year, doctors in Belgium fulfilled a patient’s request to die and also have her organs donated to others. In Germany, at least, breaking such a taboo would see the doctor in question potentially jailed.

After suffering a stroke, 43-year-old Carine gave up hope of an improvement in her condition. As well as wanting to die, she expressly stated a wish to donate her organs – a wish that can be fulfilled in Belgium. Germany, meanwhile, has a relatively low donation rate, despite there being some 12,000 patients on organ waiting lists. With the EU now also having applied pressure, the German parliament has introduced legislation that it hopes will prompt more people to consent to donation.