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ATS publishes statement on organ donation after circulatory determination of death
Date:6/30/2013

The American Thoracic Society has released an official statement on the ethical and health policy considerations surrounding adult and pediatric controlled organ donation after circulatory determination of death (DCDD), the recovery of organs after cessation of circulation from patients with severe neurological, neuromuscular or pulmonary disease for whom decisions are made to forego additional life-prolonging treatments.

The ATS developed the statement with input from the Society of Critical Care Medicine, the International Society for Heart and Lung Transplantation, the Association of Organ Procurement Organizations, and the United Network of Organ Sharing.

The statement appears in the July 1, 2013, issue of the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine.

"The recovery of viable organs must be performed with maximum respect for dying patients and their families," said Cynthia Gries, MD, MSc, assistant professor of medicine and clinical translational sciences in the Division of Pulmonary, Allergy, and Critical Care Medicine at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center and chair of the committee that drafted the statement. "With that goal in mind, we developed a framework to help guide the various stakeholders involved in the DCDD process."

Recommendations in the statement include the following:

Consent


  • When patients themselves have consented to organ donation, hospital critical care and organ procurement organization (OPO) representatives should respect the patient's decision and provide this information to surrogate decision makers.
  • After clinicians lead discussions with patients or surrogates about the decisions to withdraw life-sustaining therapies, discussions about DCDD should proceed promptly and be coordinated jointly by clinicians and OPO representatives.
  • Consent for DCDD should be obtained by individuals with appropriate experience and tra
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Contact: Nathaniel Dunford
ndunford@thoracic.org
American Thoracic Society
Source:Eurekalert

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