Organ donations in Switzerland: the principle of presumed donor consent is rejected

Publié le : 29 November 2013

 In Switzerland, the Council of States – the Upper House of the Swiss Parliament – rejected the principle of presumed donor consent in terms of organ donations by 24 votes to 18.   

Several personalities responded following this vote which took place on 28 November. In favour of presumed consent, Luc Recordon, on behalf of the Green Party stated: "when a person is dead, it is too late to ask to whom does the body belong". In other words, faced with the rights of relatives or saving lives, Luc Recordon "opts for the living".            
However, if the majority turned down presumed consent, it was to accentuate human dignity or even physical integrity.  In fact, Christine Egerszegi, of the LRP (Liberal-Radical Party) declared: "it stems from protecting the rights of the person and guaranteeing dignity for the dying[…].  Any increase in the number of organ donations warrants increased public awareness". The same goes for Verena Diener of the LGP (Liberal Green Party): "in the last moments of life, it is essential to preserve the physical integrity of the dying person and the state of mind of his/her family and friends". 

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