Donor Palaver

The centuries old motto ‘the dead teach the living’ adorns the doors and desks in many medical schools. Professor Vishy Mahadevan and Louise Evans, from the London Anatomy Office, provide rare insights on what happens when you donate your body to science and why individual consent is so important. The programme also touches upon the government’s proposal to switch to a system of presumed consent which will effectively mean the end to voluntary organ donation. Through interviewing the public on the streets and testing the government’s ideas, Citizen TV makers conclude, presumed consent is bad news. People, the programme suggests, are not just pieces of meat but are led by ethical considerations such as their sense of duty and generosity to others. To remain autonomous, able to make decisions about our own bodies, is surely a sign of a civilised society.

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