Organ shortage is a worldwide problem, resulting in long waiting times and a high mortality rate on the transplant waiting list. Living organ donation is introduced by transplant centres as a valuable alternative to bridge the gap between demand and supply of organs. Living organ donation poses opportunities, but also involves ethical, legal and psychosocial implications. Moreover, there is large heterogeneity among European countries in terms of living donation rates, ethical concerns, legislation and protection systems for living organ donors.
As a response to this European heterogeneity and to the urgent policy needs expressed by various EU institutions, the Living Organ Donation in Europe project, also named EULOD, was set up under the Seventh Framework Programme of the European Commission.
EULOD aims to
- establish an inventory of living donation practices in Europe,
- explore and promote living donation as a way to increase organ availability and
- develop tools that improve the quality and safety of living organ donations in Europe.
This action aims to achieve broad European coverage with a specific focus on new EU Member States. 11 partners from 10 different countries are involved. It draws upon the support, knowledge and network of the European platform on Ethical, Legal and Psychosocial Aspects of Organ Transplantation (ELPAT) and the European Society for Organ Transplantation (ESOT).
The consortium is proud to announce the following deliveries:
- A report on Living Donation Practices in Europe. This report presents the results of an exploratory survey completed by 113 kidney transplant centers and 39 liver transplant centres in 40 European countries.
- A report on Attitudes, Barriers and Opportunities: Results from Focus Groups Conducted in Four European Countries. This report presents the results of focus groups conducted with the aim to explore the attitudes and perceptions of transplant professionals, lawyers and patients to living organ donation in order to identify legal, ethical, financial, religious and cultural barriers to expanding living organ donation in Europe.
- A Comparative Analysis of European Transplant Laws Regarding Living Organ Donation. With the help of legal experts across Europe, transplant laws from all European countries were collected. This report presents these laws and reconsiders all legal requirements for living organ donation. In addition, it emphasises the donor-recipient relationship and procedural safeguards.
- A delivery that analyses the Normative Arguments that Dominate the Policy Arena about Necessity and Legitimacy of Legal Restrictions in Living Donor Transplantation. This part systematically presents and analyses the arguments that dominate the policy arena about necessity and legitimacy of legal restrictions in living organ donation, and subjects them to closer scrutiny.
- No’s. 3-5 provide the basis for our Best Practice Proposal: Legal Safeguards for Living Organ Donation in Europe which intends to establish a Common Frame of Reference for European Laws on Living Organ Donation (CFR-LOD).
- A report on Improving the Effectiveness of the Organ Trade Prohibition. This report first gives an overview of international organizations and the legal instruments that they have developed against organ trafficking, transplant commercialism and transplant tourism. Second, it presents empirical data of field studies conducted in Moldova, the Netherlands and Romania. It also addresses organ trafficking allegations in Kosovo. Third, it presents recommendations on improving the effectiveness of the organ trade prohibition.
All reports contain unique and novel data, on which our recommendations are based. They are now published on the project website.
European Society for Organ Transplantation
P.O. Box 36,
9750 AA Haren,
University of Gothenburg
University of Muenster
Chair for Civil Law,
Philosophy of Law and Medical Law
48143, MÜNSTER, Germany
Katholieke Universiteit Leuven
Center for Health Services and Nursing Research
3000, LEUVEN, Belgium
Bulgarian Center for Bioethics
Gorski Putnik 13-A,
1421, SOFIA, Belgium
Central University / Center for Ethics and Law in Biomedicine
Faculty Tower 806,
Nador u. 9. 1051,
106/2, A.Sciusev str., MD 2004,
Tartu University Hospital
Puusepa 8, 51014,
The Academic Society for the Research of Religions and Ideologies (SACRI)
Dept. of Systematic Philosophy
1, M. Kogalniceanu Street,
400084, CLUJ, Romania
Polish Transplant Coordinating Center
Al. Jerozolimskie 87,
02-001, WARSZAWA, Poland