The Ethics of Transplants: Why Careless Thought Costs Lives

Hardcover | April 22, 2012

byJanet Radcliffe Richards

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Few would doubt that organ transplantation is a magnificent medical advance. Many of the moral problems raised by transplantation are similar to other areas of advanced medicine: for instance, how to ration an expensive treatment fairly and treat those most in need. However, it has one set ofdistinctive problems: every organ given to one person must come from another. For every recipient there must be a donor, and the moral problems particular to transplantation are nearly all concerned with the procurement of organs. For this reason transplantation has a very interesting and prominentposition in public debate. Most of the arguments about medicine focus on the interest of patients and the availability of treatments, but in the case of transplantation the emphasis of the debate shifts to the rights of the source of the organs. The subject stretches into questions of political philosophy regarding individualrights, ownership, and social obligations. Should organ selling be prohibited entirely? Should we have a system of presumed consent unless the dead person has opted out? Should you be allowed to decide who should get your organs? Are brain-dead patients really dead?In this important exploration of a highly emotive and topical issue, Janet Radcliffe Richards, the leading moral philosopher and author of The Sceptical Feminist, does not look at specific details of clinical practice or policy, but dissects the commonly raised arguments concerning organ procurementfrom the living and the dead, as well as the care of the dying. This sharp analysis demonstrates the importance of clear thinking and informed public debate on policies of the widest public relevance.

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Few would doubt that organ transplantation is a magnificent medical advance. Many of the moral problems raised by transplantation are similar to other areas of advanced medicine: for instance, how to ration an expensive treatment fairly and treat those most in need. However, it has one set ofdistinctive problems: every organ given to o...

Janet Radcliffe Richards is currently Distinguished Research Fellow at the Oxford Uehiro Centre for Practical Ethics. She is a well-established philosopher, writer, and public commentator, and author of The Sceptical Feminist (1982).

other books by Janet Radcliffe Richards

Careless Thought Costs Lives: The Ethics of Transplants
Careless Thought Costs Lives: The Ethics of Transplants

Paperback|Oct 4 2013

$11.00 online$22.00list price(save 50%)
Format:HardcoverDimensions:256 pages, 8.5 × 5.43 × 0.01 inPublished:April 22, 2012Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:019957555X

ISBN - 13:9780199575558

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Table of Contents

1. Introduction2. Procurement from the living3. Methodological models4. Procurement from the dead5. Penumbral problems6. Conclusion