January 10, 2020

Canadians Concerned as Euthanasia Increases Organ Donations

As the rise of euthanasia increases the number of organ donations in Canada, ethics questions are being raised.

Between the months of January and November 2019, patients who died by euthanasia gave 18 organ and 95 tissue donations. This is an increase of 14% over donations in 2018, and 109% compared to donations in 2017. Some politicians expressed concerns that patients considering euthanasia might be influenced by doctors telling them that they will be able to make organ and tissue donations if they choose to die.

“The concern that I have is that it muddies the waters in terms of the patient making a decision freely, without any degree of coercion or influence from anyone,” Conservative Member of Parliament Michael Cooper told the Catholic News Agency. He further stated that the decision to donate one's organs “should not be part of the conversation” and stay “completely separate” from the decision to die via euthanasia.

If patients are convinced by others that being euthanized to save others is a noble act, then they are more likely to choose that option. Persuading desperate patients in this way is a manipulative and emotionally abusive act aimed at a vulnerable individual.