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Govt: Kiwis can not give informed donor consent

'Kiwis not capable of making a decision on donation' says govt dept.

The reason the government has backed out of their 2005 pre-election promise to introduce an organ donor register is because New Zealanders can not give informed consent according to the Ministry of Health Principal Medical Advisor.

The statement made on Close Up at 7 on TVONE last night astounded Andy Tookey of GiveLife NZ who responded that it is very arrogant of the Ministry to say New Zealanders are not capable of deciding if they wish to be donors or not and that the doctors will decide for them because 'doctor knows best.'

"Many, many civilised countries have organ donor registers, so their governments obviously understand that their citizens can make an informed choice, but New Zealand with the lowest organ donor rate in the Western World has decided that our citizens can not make that choice by themselves."
In fact, at least 44 US States and 26 European countries have gone even further by not only giving their citizens informed consent but making their choices legally binding."

The view of the Ministry that as a potential willing donor you can not give 'informed consent' is also against the Health & Disability Code of Rights. Right 7 which states: You Have A Right to Make an Informed Choice and Give Informed Consent

Close Up host, Mark Sainsbury questioned how can there be a law whose foundation is on informed consent and then take away a register which is the only place you can record that informed consent.

The government bill due to go through Parliament tonight is "hugely flawed" said Mr.Tookey, "It demands Informed Consent and then robs you of the process to give that consent."

"If the government has been acting on the advice of Ministry advisors such as the one interviewed on Close Up then there is little wonder we are the lowest in the Western World for the number of donors we have."

To watch the Close Up video interviews click the link: http://tvnz.co.nz/view/tvone_minisite_index_skin/tvone_close_up_group and then click on the video link
"New Lungs, New Life."

ENDS

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