The Bioethics Convention of the Council of Europe and Organ Sharing for Transplant Recipients in Scandinavia
Lehtonen, Lasse A.
Medicine and Law: World Association for Medical Law 2002; 21(4): 745-751
Even though organ transplantation is often life saving, the lack of donor organs is limiting the number of transplantation procedures. In small countries, like the Scandinavian countries, the small population level highlights this problem of organ availability which is further complicated by the fact that the utilisation of available organs may be prevented by histoincompatibility between the host and donor. This problem can only be solved by sharing both medical information and organs across countries. In Scandinavia, an organ sharing program (Scandiatransplant) was initiated between Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden in the late 1960's long before the establishment of European Economic Area and the expansion of the European Union in Northern Europe. Even though trade in human organs is prohibited by international conventions, medical procedures and services that are associated with transplant activities are such services whose "free movement" within the Union is guaranteed by the Convention of Rome. These services can thus be offered across the national borders for remuneration. The potential impact of the conventions of the Council of Europe on transplantation services and organ sharing programs within the European Union will be discussed.
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2000 Annual Report. the U.S. Scientific Registry of Transplant Recipients and the Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network: Transplant Data 1990-1999. Department of Health and Human Services, Health Resources and Services Administration & United Network for Organ Sharing. 616 P Unknown author (United States. Department of Health and Human Services. Health Resources and Services Administration & United Network for Organ Sharing, 2000)