Since 2014, France has authorised the harvesting of organs from donors who die from circulatory arrest following a decision to reduce or stop treatment in an intensive care unit. More and more organs are being harvested as part of the “Maastricht III protocol” (M3). The spotlight is on a certain number of hospital centres authorised by the French Agence de la Biomédecine (ABM) with slightly different protocols from those used in other countries.
This approach has increased the number of organs available for transplant (mainly kidneys) by 10 to 40%.
In France, a collegial decision aimed at limiting or stopping treatment cannot be taken in relation to organ procurement: “The focus must be on seamless transition between ICU teams and organ procurement teams”, emphasised Dr. Julien Branchereau, urologist at Nantes University Hospital and member of the Association Française d’Urologie (French Urology Association) Transplantation Committee.
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