Wednesday, August 26, 2009

China Admits to Harvesting Organs From Prisoners

It's like a science fiction story. Harvesting organs from prisoners? Yet China has admitted to doing so.

According to a report in the China Daily newspaper, citing unnamed experts, executed prisoners currently provide nearly 2/3 of all transplant organs. China executes more people than any other country. Amnesty International said at least 1,718 people were executed in 2008.

There's a reason China takes organs from prisoners, however. Well, besides the obvious one. There is cultural bias against removing organs after death. So, while the government is announced Wednesday a voluntary donation program, which it hopes will also curb illegal trafficking in organs, the odds of success are not high.

To this date, in fact, only 130 organ transplants have ever been performed in China using donors who consented to have their organs used after their death.

At least publicly, China acknowledges that the use of organs from executed prisoners is a problem. The China Daily quoted Vice-Health Minister Huang Jiefu as saying that condemned prisoners were "definitely not a proper source for organ transplants."
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surrey said...

prisoners currently provide nearly 2/3 of all transplant organs.organs used after their death.

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There are cultural biases against organ removal after death. So while the government announced on Wednesday a voluntary donation program ..

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It cannot have effect in actual fact, that is what I think.