Conditions and Approval Procedures of Organ Donations from Live Donors
The Human Organ Transplant Act - 1989 allows every suitable individual to donate his live organs to a family member (blood relation).
An individual wishing to donate his organs to a person who is not a blood relation is required to receive the approval of “the Unrelated Live Transplant Regulatory Authority – ULTRA), an authority that was established according to the above Organ Transplant Act.
It should be noted that the law does not apply to tissue donations such as bone marrow, and that with respect to bone marrow donations the approval of ULTRA is not required for a transplant from a donor who is not a family member of the required degree.
ULTRA approves a transplant from a donor to a recipient that is not a relative only after examining the following:
- The agreement of the donor to donate was given of his own complete free will.
- The donor knows and understands the risks involved in the surgery.
- Financial or other pressure is not exerted on the donor and the donor did not receive financial consideration whatsoever for his agreement to donate.
- The donor and the recipient received consultation from an independent transplant consultant who submitted a report concerning the donor’s motive to ULTRA.
- The donor understands that he is entitled to rescind his agreement at any stage prior to the transplant operation.
- Performing a transplant on an organ recipient who is not a family member of the donor without the approval of ULTRA is defined as a criminal offence with the attendant punishment of imprisonment or a fine.
Prior to every transplant, all donors (both donors to family members and donors to others) undergo a series of medical examinations, including tissue suitability examinations and suitability of the organ needed for transplant, assessment of the extent of probable harm to the donor’s health following the transplant and an examination aimed at ensuring that the donor is not a disease carrier.
The Human Organ Transplant Act –1989 states that organ trading and publicizing such trading are criminal offences with the attendant punishment of imprisonment or a fine. It is not prohibited to compensate the donor for expenses incurred such as loss of income during the hospitalization period.
Agreement to Donate Organs after Death
An individual is entitled to register as a donor in the donor registry, however should he do so the agreement of his family is required to donate his organs after his death.
According to the Human Tissue Act – 1961, an individual’s agreement to donate his organs for science and research will also be considered an agreement to donate his organs for transplant purposes. The individual that received legal possession of the body is the individual authorized to agree to donate the organs from the body for transplant.
If the deceased did not express his agreement to donate his organs during his lifetime – the individual that received legal possession of the body is authorized to agree to donate organs from the body for donation, under the condition that all reasonable examinations were conducted and that the deceased or a member of his family did not express opposition.
The Human Tissue Act – 2004 that will come into effect in April 2006 specifically states that the agreement of a minor to donate his organs, during his life or after his death, does not carry legal validity.
Organ donation from the body of a minor is only permitted with the agreement of the minor’s family or guardian.
The Human Organ Transplant Act –1989 states that organ trading and publicizing such trading are criminal offences with an attendant punishment of imprisonment or a fine. It is not prohibited to compensate the donor for expenses incurred such as loss of income during the hospitalization period.