Drug Addicts who toast their livers can get transplants!?

Re news article

“Requirements that former drug addicts seeking transplants for hepatitis-damaged livers must first give up methadone, a narcotic replacement therapy, may push them back to drug abuse, researchers reported Tuesday etc etc”

This simply astounds me! I could understand if livers were growing on trees but there are non-addicts waiting for livers and dying because none are available.

Given the unimpressive rates at which drug and alcohol addicts can truly kick their addictions in addition to the fact they willfully did this to themselves in the first place by pursuing extremely dangerous behaviours, how are they even on a list to get a liver just by being clean for a mere 6 months? It’s not an accident or a cruel twist of fate that this happened to them!

It might be tragic from a humanitarian point of view that someone chose to trash their life and body with drugs but what, from a common sense public health policy point of view, entitles them to a second shot at an extremely scare commodity?

Well Sportin’ Life you toasted the one God gave you so here’s your chance to try again! It’s enough to make you re-consider being an organ donor.

Disclaimer: I am not endorsing drug use. I am not even necessarily endorsing the principle behind the policy.

The criteria for transplants include life expectancy with the diseased organ, tissue match, availability/proximity of the donor organ, ability of the patient to survive the surgery and other medical factors. They do NOT include how the organ was damaged in the first place.

Don’t want to give a liver to a drug user? How about to a heavy drinker, like Mickey Mantle? What about a new heart for someone who smoked? A new kidney for someone who damaged the old one in a suicide attempt?

The medical establishment has decided not to make value judgements about the need for transplants.

I think the topic is GD-worthy.