Two euthanasia patients in Spain donated their organs
During the XVII National Meeting of Transplant Coordinators and Communication Professionals, taking place in Zaragoza, Beatriz Dominguez-Gil, general director of the ONT made an announcement.
“The National Transplant Organization (ONT) is developing a protocol at state level to specify the donation of organs from people who want euthanasia. In fact, eight have already contacted us to donate their organs after euthanasia, and two have already donated their organs, which has made it possible to carry out six transplants”, Ms Dominguez-Gil informed the meeting.
These six transplants were carried out on five people, who received six organs, since one of the recipients required a double lung transplant.
As the director-general emphasised, euthanasia is compatible with organ donation. In fact, in Spain, there are more than 100 hospitals with heart donations. However, “as long as the death is programmed in the hospital”, and knowing that the person “can change his or her mind at any time”, the doctor pointed out.
Spain follows in the footsteps of other countries that already have a protocol and experience in this matter, “Belgium has already had 50 donors who received euthanasia since 2011, Canada more than 100 since 2017, and the Netherlands more than 80 since 2012″, pointed out Dominguez-Gil.
It was also announced that 120 transplants have already been carried out from 47 donors who had previously recovered from Covid, of which three had a positive PCR. “It has not been shown in scientific literature that the virus is transmitted through the blood, and we have evidence that it has not happened”, said Mario Fernandez-Ruiz, from the Infectious Diseases Unit of the Hospital Universitario del 12 de Octubre, in Madrid.
Adding that, “today it has not been possible to grow viruses in blood samples from patients with Covid. On the other hand, the positivity of the PCR in the respiratory tract does not imply the presence of any viable virus. PCR is a diagnostic test so we can detect remains of what is no longer there: the fingerprint, hence, the longer the time elapsed, the lower the risk”.