Ethical Discussions: Legalizing the sale of kidneys

The need for kidney transplants has been steadily growing in recent years. In the United States as well as many other countries, the need for kidney transplants is far greater than available donors. According to an article in the New York Times, in 2013 there were approximately 16,900 kidney transplants. However, this past September there were more than 100,000 patients who needed a kidney transplant. On average, in the United States, the waiting time for a kidney is close to 5 years. Over 4,000 people a year die waiting for a kidney transplant.

An article in the Wall Street Journal, written last year by a Nobel Prize winning professor of economics at the University of Chicago and another economics professor at the Universidad del CEMA in Argentina, discussed the need for kidney transplants and suggested that the solution to the current kidney shortage was to establish a market for organs. The authors estimated that the kidney shortage might be resolved by setting up a system by which individuals would receive an average payment of $15,000 to donate a kidney. Currently, the only country in which it is legal to sell a kidney is Iran.

A few years ago, a British academic created a stir when she suggested the idea that college students should be allowed to sell a kidney if they wished to do so, and that this could help the kidney shortage problem as well as enable college students to gain money to pay off debt. She stated that college students should be paid a set amount, around £28,000, to donate a kidney. That amount is equal to the average annual income in the United Kingdom.

Is it ethical to set up a system by which people can donate a kidney for money? Does this commodify the human body? Does this exploit people who are economically disadvantaged, or does it simply create an opportunity for them to make the decision to sell a kidney?

#spcethics

33 thoughts on “Ethical Discussions: Legalizing the sale of kidneys

  1. I don’t believe there is that much difference between this and organ donation. Money being exchanged instead of a donation. It is the choice of the individual. Agreed it is sort of a macabre scenario, but if the individual wants to risk the loss of a kidney then that is his/her decision. Whenever money enters the equation it seems that is all that is focused on.

    1. I believe setting up a kidney market would be more beneficial than not. A friend of mine’s father is a transplant surgeon, specifically in the abdominal organs. He explained to me how the demand for kidney transplants are so high, but their demands cannot fully be met, as the process for finding a suitable kidney (and donor) is a long and meticulous process. Surrogate mothers, as well as Sperm and egg banks are widely used, with the same concept: giving a part of or using your body for a large sum of money. While giving up a kidney IS more dangerous than giving up reproductive cells, it is possible to function safely with only one kidney. However, there should be restrictions and requirements in the market. Background checks and reviews of health records should be vital to a decision of whether or not a person could function properly, with a lower risk of future health problems, if they decide to sell a kidney. By creating a market, however, students and other individuals in debt could potentially help in solving many of their problems, as well as monumentally aiding the demands for kidney transplants, and speeding up the grueling process of selecting a donor and kidney. Many also believe that in a process of a transplant, everybody involved makes money EXCEPT the donor themselves. The surgeon, the organ donation center, and the hospital all make money, while the donor makes nothing (he simply loses a part of his body. no big deal.) there is virtually no difference between selling and donating organs, besides the fact that the donor gets the money, which he unarguably deserves more so than any other member involved in the process.

      society commercializes and advertises many harmful products and methods, such as drinking, or in a more harmful case, smoking. Why should you be allowed to give up your own money for something so lethal to one or more organs, but not be allowed to give an organ, which you CAN safely live without, for money? One could argue “you’re mutilating the human body” but with smoking, drinking, plastic surgery, etc., I don’t really think it’s a decent argument.

      Yes, this topic is extremely controversial. But, if we allow organ donation, why can’t we allow organ sales? Yes, it does commodify the human body, but society has been far ahead in that category. Sex industry, prostitution, plastic surgery, even the cosmetics industry commodifies the human body in one way or another. The decision to sell a kidney is a personal decision, so, if you don’t want to? Don’t. But by setting up markets, it could be more beneficial than not, by speeding up and helping the process of finding an organ and donor, as well as helping the donors financially.

  2. I do not believe it is ethical to sell a kidney, or to create a system which allows people to do so. Not only does this exploit people that are having financial difficulties, but it also sets them up for future possibly life threatening problems. The British Acedemic who suggested that college students be allowed to sell a kidney in order to help pay off debt was only considering the positive effects short term. Anytime a person goes under the knife there is a risk of death. To add to the reasons a person should not consider sale of an organ is that there is no guarantee they will not have problems with the remaining kidney later in life. For monetary gain a person could be risking their very lives.

  3. This is wrong on so many levels. First of all, a mere 15,000 dollars for one of my kidneys? Are you kidding me?
    Organ donation is a wonderful thing, and if I am ever in a situation where I needed a kidney, I would be very grateful to the donor for their sacrifice. It’s a sacrifice, NOT a get out of debt quick scheme, driven by financial insecurity and desperation. Many, particularly young naïve, cash strapped and debt ridden college students would be misled if such a system existed. Who is the voice here, reason or desperation? The mere mention of college students in this article, suggests a scam. 15,000 dollars to the poor starving student, and how much will that kidney be sold for? Money isn’t everything. Interesting that no medical expert was mentioned in the article, only an economics professor!

  4. Is it ethical to set up a system by which people can donate a kidney for money?
    I believe it is Ethical to allow Citizens who live and a country where they can legally adopt kids, the right to sell an organ. If we are able to adopt someone into a better life, better opportunities, and a better way of living as a whole. Why can we not save potential that same life with a God given organ that is ours alone to do with as we please? If there are Millions of people dying simply “Waiting” on such an invaluable organ why not create a market for it? We create a market for literally everything else. The Price of an adoption is not free nor is it a cheap endeavor. Yet we are putting restraints on an internal organ that is inside the body of an individual born into a Free Nation. Why turn away from a potential life saver in every sense of the word, you would then have people Middle & lower class given the opportunity rid themselves of student loan debt or whatever type of debt they need assistance with to create a better way of living for that individual or family. And in retrospect you are saving and creating potentially a second chance at life for someone, Mother, Father, Brother, sister, etc. This could also kick start our economy.

    Does this commodify the human body? Yes, it does. We commercialize and bottle up sex that potentially can spread disease, we commercialize tobacco that kills millions of Americans a day, we even allow abortion; voluntary killing of a fetus, made to listen to the heartbeat just to understand it will no longer beat because you PAID for it to not be so? Interesting, I would say. Yet, it matters HOW we are able to saving another’s life, when realistically we only need 1 kidney to live a healthy life. Interesting. What is wrong with making this a commercialized commodity like anything else?

    Does this exploit people who are economically disadvantaged, or does it simply create an opportunity for them to make the decision to sell a kidney? Both. Just to play devils’ advocate we would have to treat this like anything else. You cannot account for each individuals drive and purpose that brought them to this decision. Nor can we say because an individual is at an economically disadvantage they will consider selling their Kidney. Keep in mind there is already a Black Market for this. We cannot place any misconceived hypotheticals to everyone that is below the poverty line. Rules and laws would have to be put into place, open to everyone regardless. Millions would be saved and as individual voters and Americans we would take the best path laid out for our own goals, dreams and aspirations to what is hoped to be a better life or situation than you are currently in. What if we could disintegrate lower class all together? What if we could give someone a 2nd chance to right the direction in their life? What if we could free up financial debt? Hike credit scores? What is so horrible about that? Keeping in mind we are saving potentially, neighbors, nurses, teachers, people from all walks of life and backgrounds that could potential still have a purpose left to contribute in their lifetime if given the opportunity to receive a Kidney from a willing and healthy participant. It is sad to say but in a dog eat dog world, money talks and to diminish the death toll in this it would not be a horrible idea to me.

  5. For me I’m in the middle, but there are more positive stuff than negative stuff on legalizing the sale of kidneys. The positive stuff is that, we can help the people that is suffering from kidney problems that is praying to find their match and don’t have to wait years just for their transplant. I think for me, it is the persons decision if he wants to donate his/her kidney or not and I don’t think he/she will put his/her self in the position where she/he does not know the pros and cons to what she/he is trying to do. We can help a lot of lives through that. But at the same time the negative possibilities is that the people that has financial problem and needs money will take advantage of the situation.

  6. The assumption is only people who don’t need money donate organ, and assumes people with lower income do not donate organ; which mean that only people with lower income would sell a kidney and people who don’t need money would not sell a kidney.

    To me there is no ethical question involve because it is still a personal choice to donate or sell. The only ethical question is how the kidney is acquired. The potential for black market opportunity becomes greater.

  7. As a proponent of the free market, I am not completely against an individual making their individual choice to sell their kidney to a person in desperate need of a kidney. With that being said, I do feel that there needs to be a guideline of requirements that should be met such as an age limit – and no offense to folks of college student age (I’m 37), but in my humble opinion being of the college student age is not a mature enough age to make that decision even though they are legal adults. A lot happens when you pass your mid 20’s as far as your outlook on life and your habits, so please do not think I’m calling anyone out. I’m not big on the idea as far as living a life with one kidney for myself, I wouldn’t sell one of mine unless I couldn’t afford to feed my kids any longer or something desperate like that, but I believe in individual liberty and personal responsibility – so who am I to tell someone what to do with their organs?

  8. OK. I am again some what unsure what to answer on the subject of selling one’s kidney . Again, this Ethics course is running parallel with my Economics class. Supply and demand drives free enterprise and helps the economy grow, but is it ethical for example to sell plywood or generators at huge mark ups in the after math of a hurricane? Is it ethical to create a market where students are offered the chance to sell their kidneys? Not to me. While it may be legal, or made legal, I do not feel that either practice is ethical. I am however glad that it is not my choice to tell others what to do or not do with their body parts…. So, I guess that I am sure after all…. Not ethical is my stance on creating a kidney market.

  9. It is very unfortunate that there are individual who need a kidney in order to live. However, I don’t feel that a system should be set up for this purpose. I feel that it is not ethical to sell ones kidney. It should not be view as good and services. It is a vital body organ and needs to be viewed as such. I feel that there should be more programs such as the registries that help locate such organs, but for a student to sell their kidney for money just doesn’t seem like the individual is doing it for the right reason. Everyone one at some point in life will have financial difficulties however, there are many other legal and moral ethical ways to get money. An individual should not be given the platform to risk their lives for money by selling part of their bodies.

  10. How much is your body worth??

    Who can set a price tag on your body parts? With all the greed and opportunistic people, I do not think the US should legalize the selling of body parts. With college kids putting themselves through college, they already donate blood, and plasma and sell term papers, next kids would be walking around trying to sell their kidneys. On the contrary, I do believe that there should be an organization process set up for those who wish to donate. We already have sperm and egg donors, and surrogate mothers who are paid for their time and donation, so a kidney or another organ could become part of the system. The system should be set up with a screening process including a physical by an MD, a mental eval and counseling so that a person would have to fall into a certain criteria, and not just any Tom, Dick and Harry who is hard up on cash can just go donate their kidney. Along with the screening process their should be a wait to see if in a year if you would still like to donate your vital organ you can do so, and it wasnt a decision that your are pressured into.

  11. With setting up a market there will be more kidneys given to those in need of transplants. I went to college with kids that would sell plasma and other bodily fluids to make some extra cash. Women can “donate” their wombs to parents that cannot have children. Although these donations are not “permanent” and kidneys don’t grow back, this could greatly benefit those who need kidneys. Because this is more of a permanent procedure there should be a screening process to ensure there is no one just doing this for the money.

  12. As long as there are proper procedures to ensure each that each person who is willing to donate their kidney, has a healthy kidney to donate, I don’t see why one can’t. I just think it’s extremely necessary to make these kind of procedures mandatory. Just about anybody can give blood and get some extra cash in small amounts over time. But shelling out thousands of dollars for a vital organ, it definitely needs to be in good health for the recipient. I do think that if this were to be legalized, then in the beginning stages of marketing for it- each donor would need to be fully informed on the lifelong affects it would have on their body and the medication that may need to be taken.
    On the other side- what if a person is willing to donate, and after having it removed finds out they could have donated it for money, decides he/she wants it back if they receive no compensation. Would they/are they allowed to do so, under law?
    So I agree with some of the previous comments, there probably should be a screening process to ensure there is no aftermath stress for any party involved(donor/bank or whoever is funding the money), so everything is on the table, and there is a complete and equal understanding between both parties(previously described) before anything transpires that can not be reversed.

  13. I believe if a person wants to sell a kidney for money I have no problem if the person’s doctor has given the approval and they are healthy and their family history doesn’t have any possible complications. But I believe the person themselves should be the one to do it not forcing someone to do it and not someone walking in with a jar filled with kidneys if they bring people I don’t think they should do it if two sides disagree but I see many positives with this as it gives the people a choice to donate or sell and it can make fewer people die each year It gives people badly in need of a transplant better odds that they will get a kidney while it gives people who need money an opportunity to get some extra money but everyone before doing the transplant I think should see what risks they may have because almost everyone can get a risk or have health problems so I think a doctors approval should be needed. To prevent anyone’s family from creating a lawsuit I feel it’s best to see if there are more pros than cons and if so I don’t have a problem with people doing it. I think it would be a good idea for everyone involved to sign legal paper saying if anything goes wrong they understand the risks and there family be advised at what will happen I don’t think it’s unfair to anyone because it takes people of the list if they can afford to buy it reduces the number the need it and I don’t see from the statistics that it would be likely that any kidney’s would be thrown away if the number of people needing it is higher than the number are available I don’t see any going to waste.

  14. This definitely isn’t the most informing article on this subject, so therefore this might not be the most educated comment here… Just my opinions. Is it ethical to set up this system? Well, it has the potential to save a lot of lives for the over 100,000 people needing a kidney transplant, but it could endanger the life of the person selling their kidney.. Obviously there must be a screening process to determine whose eligible to sell their precious organs, but like Angela Clark said, people sell their plasma for extra money all the time. I think if there should be a minimum age of 21 to sell your kidney, because even though 18 is considered an adult I don’t believe the brain is developed enough by just 18 to make a decision like that. That said, selling your kidney for profit as an adult who is aware of the ALL of the risks associated with the procedure should absolutely have the opportunity to do so. Those saying it takes advantage of people with financial difficulties need to open their eyes and realize that there are way worse things they could be getting paid to do in their time of financial desperateness than selling their kidney to someone in need. Also, I think that the potential kidney sellers should have to speak to a Doctor that will evaluate their overall physical and mental health before they are eligible for a program like this.

    1. The blog post is intended to introduce the topic for discussion and to provide further sources of information. There are links to three separate articles in the blog post which provide more details about the topic for readers seeking additional data.

  15. I do not believe it would be ethical to allow the sale of a kidney. Yes it may help one person temporarily by helping them pay some dept or another to get the kidney but what about the donor? What would happen to them if something came up later or there was a complication due to the loss of a part of their body? Or how about the recipient of the kidney if there was a complication there on their end? In that instance the donor would have mutilated their own body for no real gain. Even on the dept end there would be no real gain, as a college student just going for my basic AA I already have more then 15,000 dollars in dept and I haven’t even finished my basic degree let alone going to a bigger college or a harder to earn degree. Even as a regular citizen with house or car payments again 15,000 dollars wouldn’t be very beneficial. How about where would that 15,000 dollars person where would that come, I doubt the government or medical insurgence would cover that, most likely the receiver of the kidney would have to pay it, so what they now have to magically come up with 15,000 dollars or die? wouldn’t that be a little unfair? then if they could come up with 15,000 dollars on the spot, what only the rich would deserve to live, or now they get to live great along with their own 15,000 dollars in debt. Then there is recovery time for both people which for the student would take time away from classes, work and possibly family time. So in the end though it would be the persons choice and it is their body to sell like meat at the market, I personally think there would be more negatives to allow it, then positives to be worth the price. So no I don’t think its worth having your body cut open for a kidney or for anything else really unless absolutely necessary to save your life.

  16. 4,000 per year is an enormous amount of lives to be lost if there is an easy solution. If any dollar amount was awarded to individuals who donated one of his or her kidneys to the thousands of patients waiting for one, it is safe to presume there would be much more kidneys than is even needed. The ethical concerns arise when questions are posed such as, “is it right to offer someone who is financially unstable money for their body parts?” and, “how much, in dollar amounts, is the human body worth?” Very obviously, these ethical concerns are not being posed by any of the 100,000 patients who needed kidney transplants last September, and definitely not by those patients’ mothers, children, or spouses. My opinion is that these ethical concerns are valid, but also that they are microscopic compared to the ethical concerns attached to 4,000 lives lost per year while waiting for a kidney, when there is something that can be done to prevent those losses. When a life is in critical condition, the ethical concerns attached to donating kidneys for money become much less important. Karl Wormer at John Hopkins Medical Center spends his days caring for kidney donors before, during, and after donating a kidneys, and he recalls a comment one of his patients made regarding to the reasons why someone may donate a kidney, he states, “The motivations of these individuals is best summed up by one of my previous donors who said that his life would not be complete if he died with two kidneys and was not able to donate one to someone to help them out.” So if there are already people who are already donating their kidneys for reasons such as self-satisfaction and fulfillment, why shouldn’t those individuals be awarded a dollar amount as sort of a “thank you” from the recipient? If it is already legal for a person to donate his or her kidney to someone who is in dire need, why is it illegal to make the situation sort of a, “win-win,” benefitting both parties? And finally, if a person is willing to sell his or her kidney for any reason whether it be student loans, mortgage or even just for a vacation, why not let that person make that decision for themselves?

  17. I argue for the selling of Kidneys

    American obesity, heart disease, and diabetes are on the rise because of Americans high taste to salts, and fats. A small percentage is genetics, but most of these diseases can be purely preventable. Therefore, I feel the two professors from Chicago and Argentina solution is arguably correct. The facts state that over 4,000 people die waiting for a kidney transplant, and that waiting time is close to five years. An answer that can give hope to individuals faster is not only an ethical decision but the right one. The professors state that individuals are able to sell their kidney and in result they receive a money payment of 15,000 dollars. With this payment, some individuals who are in college could use that payment to pay off their college debt. Individuals who oppose the idea believe it is unethical because individuals can use it to pay off their college debt, or it puts those individuals at a higher risk for serious health problems in the future. However I feel the problem our nation has is we all want to get involved in other people’s business. If one were to donate it would be their absolute right. And yes there could be a huge risk to the individuals who donates their kidney, but whose business is it for someone else to limit that individuals own personal right. The way we are going right now, Americans indulging themselves with sweets and carbs is not doing anything in solving this national epidemic we are all facing. We have a system right now that is making individuals wait and wait for an organ until it becomes to late. We need to rethink our ways, and I believe the professors are on the right path. This system could go as an incentive for young individuals to sell their kidneys, and in result provide another individual with hope for a better life.

  18. I think it is ethical to set up a system the kidneys can be sold and that individual would get paid to do so. These are people who would freely make that decision themselves. And with that decision, a life would be save. Also, the people selling the kidneys would be rewarded with an extra income , and there is no crime to it.Once the word” money” is involved, most would think that it is unethical to sell kidneys. There are thousands of people on the waiting list. And if there are no known kidneys, they will eventually die. I wouldn’t think the people on the waiting list care where the kidney(s) is coming from. Once they live, Is that unethical?. When one get a call stating that they are a definite match, I wouldn’t think the recipient would asked for names, geographical boundaries and go and research. I would think their initial actions would be jumping for joy and life.

  19. I do believe it is ethical for someone to sell their kidney. After all it’s their body they have a right to do with it what they wish. The idea of selling ones kidney seems like a no-brainer to me. There is very little risk for the people donating the kidney. The surgeons who preform these operations on patients have probably preformed thousands if not tens of thousands of kidney transplants in the past. So, with that being said, let’s apply Act Utilitarianism to a situation to see if it is indeed ethical to sell ones kidney.

    In this theoretical situation a man named Hrothgar is dying from PKD, he has a wife and two small children. A college kid name Grendel doesn’t want to want to begin his adult life in debt so, he decides to sell his kidney. The possible actions are: Grendel sells his kidney to Hrothgar and Grendel doesn’t sell his kidney. People affected by the optional actions: Grendel, because there is a itsy-bitsy chance some sort of completions could arise from the surgery, Hrothgar, because if he doesn’t receive a new kidney he will die, and Hrothgar’s family; his family needs him to keep the peace in the new kingdom.
    Grendel Hrothgar Hrothgar’s family Net
    Grendel sells his kidney: +8 +10 +10 +28
    Grendel doesn’t sell his kidney: -5 -10 -10 -25
    According to Act Utilitarianism we should let Grendel sell his kidney to Hrothgar.

    The idea that this would commodity the human body is ridicules. The human body has been a commodity for centuries. Prostitution the world oldest professions is by definition the sale of one’s body. Is it more appropriate to sell sex then a kidney which would save a life? As to the question would this exploited people who are more disadvantaged, I think it might be a little exploitive, but the Red Cross blood center pays people money for their blood, so there is already a precedent there. And if anything this would create a whole new marked; more jobs would be created as a result. If someone is down on their luck in life and they need cash quick and as long as they are willing and healthy enough to sell their kidney then they should be able to do as they so wish.

  20. I believe it is ethical to have a market where kidneys could be sold to people who are willing to buy them for people who are in need of them. Just like nowadays where there are banks that sell sperm to the families that don’t have other alternatives. Now, about that price range though, I wouldn’t set the bar too high for it. I think 1500 is too much to give away and too much to receive because then there would be a problem that people could easily fall into the trap of. We would see people go to any extreme just to get some money. At the same time, I think we’d be falling in the range of exploiting our human bodies for money. I could also see how people would sell up to anything just to get some cash not for the fun of it but because of necessity. The kidney market would get sky rocket and I think investors would start making other body part markets to where we’d see places selling eyes, arms and whatever that is indispensable and hospitals that are willing to buy just because these places would get great amount of profit. I believe that’s where it would be unethical. To have a kidney market isn’t a bad idea, it should have strict regulations though like only for specific purposes of buying and selling kidneys. There should be a reasonable amount of money paid for those willing to sell kidneys but the person must meet requirements to sell it in the first place. A lot of regulations should take place just to make it safe and avoid any legal or illegal problems. My cousin was someone whose kidney stopped working and his mother, my aunt, donated her very own to provide. I know kidney failures have increasingly grown with thousands of people dying every year of it. If there is a way to lower the rate and have more donators by opening a market, I think it would be a useful idea.

  21. Donating Kidneys for Money
    After reading the blog about “Legalizing the sales of kidneys” I came to an agreement that the sale of kidneys would be a very helpful idea. I believe it is ethical to set up a system by which people can donate a kidney for money. However before I start discussing why I agree for the sale of kidneys I want to talk about why people don’t donate their kidneys in the first place. Many people don’t donate their kidneys because a lot of them don’t want to donate a kidney to a stranger they don’t know. People much rather donate to a relative or a close friend. Another reason people don’t donate kidneys so easily is because they don’t get paid for it or don’t even get some type of reward for doing a nice deed. According to the article the need of kidney transplants have grown over the recent years. I found that about 101,662 people living in the United States are awaiting a kidney transplant stated by kidney.org. If people would get paid to donate a kidney there would be a greater amount of people that would donate their kidneys. Who doesn’t want to get paid $15,000 for donating their kidney? Patients in need of a kidney wouldn’t have to wait five or more years to get a transplant if the sale of kidneys would be legalized. This would also commodify the bodies of the patients in need of a transplant because without a kidney transplant they could lose their lives. Imagine how helpless these patients feel knowing that they might not live to get a transplant. By also giving people money to donate not only would they be helping the patients but they would also be helping themselves by the money they are given. I don’t think this would exploit the people who are economically disadvantaged, I actually think this would be very beneficial to them. The donors could pay off any debts, expenses, or even save the money they got for other types of emergencies. In addition to getting paid to donate a kidney, donors would feel great knowing that they saved a life. In conclusion I believe legalizing the sale of kidneys would be very beneficial not only to the patients but to the donors as well but its every individuals decision whether or not they would want to donate.

  22. I don’t think there is anything wrong with setting up a system for people to sell their kidneys for money. As long as, they kidneys coming in are clean and able to be used. There would be a lot more lives saved by it because more people would be willing to give up a kidney. I agree with the idea of reimbursing the participant for the kidney because you have organ donors who don’t get anything at all. Yes, money is involved but at the same time a lot of lives would be saved. For me, it comes down to choices personally I would not do it but I know a couple of college students who would because of college debt. It all depends on the individual I don’t think the money aspect of it makes it less ethical I see it as a great incentive for people to want to help. This is a serious issue because there are a lot of people on a waiting list waiting for a kidney transplant. I am speaking from personal experience this is a subject that I know really well. The only thing that I would be worried about would be the type of people that sell their kidneys because college students tend to do a lot of things that is not good for the body. So how would they pick the right people to sell a kidney? I don’t see any harm in selling a kidney you get to save a life and make some money while doing it. Life is all about options and this option seems to work for everybody because the person who will receive the kidney would be more that grateful and very thankful because they have been waiting for someone to give them a kidney possible they have been waiting for years.

  23. Legalizing the sale of kidneys

    After reading the article of Legalizing the sale of a kidney i have come to the Determination that this is an amazing idea. Setting up a system by which people can donate a kidney is something that could be very helpful for everyone. specially for those in need, According to a National kidney foundation there are 123,193 people waiting for lifesaving organ transplants in the us. And the median wait time for an individual is approximately is 3.6 years and depending on the patient’s health. setting up this program will not just help these people in need but it would help good healthy people as well, as for example college students. The reason i say this is because this could be a great opportunity for certain people to have this donation and receive up to 15,000 which is what the program will pay you. And this minney could be use for good causes as for example to pay any college expenses or any money that has been granted to you. It is scientifically proven that most people are born with two kidneys and that you only need one to live, which this means that this decision would not be exploding anyone by having one of their kidney remove. Another huge reason that i think this would be a great idea is because there is something called the Black Market which is an illegal traffic or trade that takes place outside the government’s authorization and thousands of people use this to kidnap people and sell their organs especially kidneys. The illegal trades of kidneys have raisen to approximately 10,000 black market operations selling human bodies. The reason i say this is because by setting up this donation program the black market would not be buying as much kidneys now and the amount of people being kidnap would reduce. I mean who does not want to get 15,000 dollars for exchanging one of your kidneys especially if its for a very good cause.

  24. I do not believe in selling your kidneys. I mean yes that is quite a bit of money especially if you are a poor college student like myself; however, I feel like this is such a negative of use of the human body just for acquiring money. I mean if you wish to exploit yourself like this you might as well become a stripper. There are positive aspects to this situation, and instead of people waiting years for a suitable donor to arrive the medical field could have an access to numerous amounts of kidneys to treat sick or dying patients. It would also benefit college students that are struggling to survive in this social and financial nightmare. I believe that it makes you a better person to endure those hardships, so that you appreciate life when you make it to the top. I believe the negatives would out way the positives because as it is common in human, we tend to abuse opportunities like this, and take a look at the social security system not a too promising future. Then how would that look to the children then everyone would start selling their kidneys, so that they could receive 15,000 dollars for their kidney, and if we started selling kidneys like it was nothing were would the line be draw would people starting selling one of their lungs to a smoker, so that they continue their dirty habit and ruin a perfectly functioning body part, but getting away from people possibly abusing the system. We are still faced with the shear fact that the cost for a kidney transplant would be insane. I believe the cost would skyrocket because the hospital or clinic that would have to perform the extraction of kidney would have to pay the individual, and add the extra cost to the potential patient. I believe the commercial selling of kidneys would be a terrible idea despite the benefits that it could provide.

  25. I think this is absolutely a great idea. Fifteen thousand dollars to sell a kidney? Count me in. It’s my body I can do what I want with it. If I can sell it on the black market I should be able to sell it to a reputable business. I think the fact that they are advertising college students to sell them is a bit weird due to them being young, but maybe it has something to do with most young peoples kidneys being in good shape. I know for instance my grandfather needed a kidney transplant, and I’m not sure how he went about getting one, but I am sure that it would have been cheaper and probably easier to afford and get ahold of if people were able to legally sell them. Also I think it will exponentially increase the safety of selling kidneys because instead of doing a shady back alley kidney black market deal and transplant, you can go to a reputable business and sell it where you know the risk of injury and/or life is much lower. Now i’m sure there are some good reasons for not being able to sell kidneys legally, but I think the positives definitely out weigh the negatives in this situation. I would need some strong convincing otherwise that i’m not sure anyone would be able to do. I think if you can smoke of drink and ruin your liver and lungs because its “your body”, then you should absolutely be able to sell a kidney. I mean the fact that assisted suicide is legally more common than just selling a kidney for a profit, that you don’t necessarily need is illegal boggles me. That basically says it is alright to kill yourself or have someone kill you, but you cant sell a kidney that will keep you alive and benefit both all parties involved. Its ludicrous.

  26. Every year, four thousand people die waiting for a kidney transplant? That’s a whole lot of people who die waiting for something as simple as a kidney transplant. So, what would motivate more people to give one kidney away? Well, what motivates all of us? Money. If the hospital paid us to give organs away, a lot more people would do it. Is it the ethical thing to do though? Selling organs for money might seem wrong when one says it out loud, but on paper, it works out for everyone. It’s a win win all around; the patient gets to live, the donor gets a handsome sum of money, and the doctors help more patients thus helping out the hospital as a whole. People against this idea would say it’s unethical to sell your body parts, but if it helps everyone and no one loses, why is it unethical. If we run this idea through a couple of ethical theories, such as Rawls theory, it proves to be ethical. According to Rawls, an action or idea is ethical if it is fair to all stakeholders. The stakeholders in this situation would be the doctor, the hospital, the patient, and the donor. It’s fair to the patient obviously because he/she gets to continue their life and is fair to the donor because he/she sold their kidney willingly and received several thousand dollars for it. It is fair to the doctor because he doesn’t have to tell the patient that they have a slim chance and it is fair for the hospital because they gain a higher reputation for helping more people. In conclusion, although selling your own kidney sounds wrong and unethical, when you really think about it, it does much more good than bad.

  27. Is it ethical to set up a system by which people can donate a kidney for money? I think it is ethical to let people have control over what they want to do with their bodies. We live in a country where you can donate blood, sell plasma, put your child up for adoption, or get almost any cosmetic adjustment you can think of. As long as it’s your body and you aren’t harming anyone I think it would be pretty ethical to set up a system where people can donate a kidney for money as long as it was the person’s decision and they were comfortable with it.

    Does this commodify the human body? I can see where some people would feel like this could be commodifying the body, you’re donating a vital organ for cash, you’re basically selling pieces of yourself. But, I also feel like this could be viewed as doing something extraordinary for someone else and being compensated for a painful procedure. Donating a kidney out of the kindness of your heart isn’t going to cut it for much longer as the need for kidney transplants is far greater than available donors, so a money incentive might be a good thing.

    Does this exploit people who are economically disadvantaged, or does it simply create an opportunity for them to make the decision to sell a kidney? I personally think that it could be looked at two ways, just like selling plasma I mentioned earlier it’s all how it’s looked at. With the selling plasma you have alcoholics and homeless people selling it to afford liquor or whatever it is they need or you could have a broke college student selling it to scrape by until the end of the week or you have the person who does it because they feel it helps and the money is just like a perk. I think if you figured you don’t need your kidney and would rather pay off student loans then it becomes just an opportunity to sell something, but if you were very poor and knew the only way to get extra money was to sell your kidney then it’s kind of like exploiting economically disadvantaged.

  28. After researching and figuring out the advantage and the disadvantage to both sides, I think it’s unethical legalizing the sale of kidneys and if a system like that got legalized, it would be a complete failure. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not against donating a kidney to your loved ones, and if one of my loved ones ever needed a kidney I would not hesitate to give them one of mine. It’s a big sacrifice and it comes out of a lot of love and courage for someone to do something like that. I think most people would agree that god created us with two kidneys, and if you don’t believe in god simply believe that your human body has two kidneys for a reason. I understand that people can live a healthy life with only one, but what happens if you donate one and in the future the one you’re left with fails? What happens if at the time of the donation you’re healthy and after five or X amount of years you get diabetes, blood pressure, or heart problems? Those are some very important question you need to think about before you decide selling a kidney. Let’s put all that aside and discuss why a system like that would be a complete failure. Personally I think because the money that is offered is not that much. I think desperate people do desperate things, but at the same time I can’t imagine that someone would be so desperate that they cannot think nor do anything else in the world other than selling a part of their body. Let’s assume that the person who’s doing that really have no other option, and everyone knows that the black market for organs exists everywhere even in the United States. If a system like that got legalized, why would I sell my kidney for $15,000 or even £28,000 while on the other hand, with little research I can find some rich guy that is willing to pay $200,000 or even more because he doesn’t want to wait or be on the waiting list.

  29. After I read this blog post I decided to do a little more search on the sale of kidneys. The selling of kidneys is ethical, we already sell eggs and sperm so there really is no difference. Most people who need kidney transplants don’t often get them because of the short supply; then those who don’t get them either die or have to spend a long time on dialysis. Yes, people who are desperate for money would jump at the chance of getting money for an organ but before they could they should receive some sort of counseling to see if they if they really want through with it and get tested to see if they are healthy enough to give one. In an article I read it pointed out that it would be more beneficial to pay a living patient for their kidney then to keep a patient in the hospital who needs a kidney. When the question comes up of why don’t people donate their kidney if so many people need them, the answer is simple people won’t willing give up an organ like that unless their getting something out of it. If hospitals paid patients for their kidneys then there would be a lot more kidneys to give and less people would die. It would also eliminate the sale of organs in the black market and reduce the underground operations that occur to get those kidneys. Research has shown that a person can lead a normal life with only one working kidney. Living with one kidney is like giving up insurance on your life but if there were more people donating getting a new one would be a lot less of a hassle. So if people would be compensated for their kidney they are more than likely to give one up.

  30. I think that it is ethically right to setup a system by which people can donate a kidney for money. It should be the donor’s choice to either donate their organ or not. One has a lot of advantages by doing so; the most important advantage is knowing that they made a difference in someone’s life not only the individual’s life but also their family’s as well. The donor gives them a second chance at life but nevertheless, they are still able to live their own life after the surgery. Based on the article above, once college students are involved the advantage becomes even greater. There are thousands of students struggling to pay off their college debt and spend most of their adulthood trying to pay it off. Students struggle two jobs or more while still enrolled in classes, hoping that their debt would decrease. But unfortunately while focused on their student loans, their grades start dropping, and their anxiety increases which leads to bigger problems. Student and the recipient would benefit so much from this system.
    Does this commodify the human body? In a way yes people’s bodies get exposed but the waiting list gets longer and longer each year while time is ticking, selflessness is just not enough. Many people need more of a motivation to give. And that’s why we need to be able to reimburse people who are willing to give a kidney to a stranger, to save a life, not talking about a classic commercial free-for-all, but a third party payer.
    Does this exploit people who are economically disadvantaged, or does it simply create an opportunity for them to make the decision to sell a kidney? I believe it simply creates an opportunity for them to make a decision to sell their kidney. The donor’s morals of course should be questioned and held under close supervision but at the end of the day it is their body, they can choose whatever they want to do with it. They will have to decide if their choice and economic disadvantage is worth the risk of donating. The government controls enough why someone cannot have the right to choose.

  31. I incline to agree with letting people to have the option to sell their organs, if they so choose to. This whole new approach of changing the system is a good idea, so that it not only helps those that are in dire need of a transplant but also can benefit the donor by receiving so sort of compensation for their donation. I believe it is ethical and it can greatly help the public. In a way, it can also be very understandable that it may seem that the human body becomes more of a commodity, and can exploit the disadvantaged. For that reason alone I think if some type of regulation were to be passed so that these of transactions are to occur, it should be closely monitored by some kind of healthcare organization so that it can provide those that are interested in donating can be educated on the process before officially going forward with it. Of course this should not be a solution that should stay in place for the future, but just temporarily; more research and development should be always taking place to better provide patients with alternatives to obtain organs when needed. One example is how researchers that can now grow organ using adult stem cells and so on.
    It is clear that with the global population growing more and more it should be a very top priority to look into when reviewing organ donations of any kind, if not there will just a growing list of deaths that occur because they were waiting for the right donor to come along. More should be looked into the matter not only from an ethical point of view but also a regulatory perspective as well. It looks as if this subject just seems to be one of those subjects that don’t always come up for discussion, that really should be at the forefront.

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