Organ Trafficking Transplant Tourism

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Most patients would ordinarily rely on family bond for first-hand medical requirements, including the donation of organs, tissues, and cells. When families are unable to provide the much-needed organs, patients throng the organ markets, both legitimate and black markets in a bid to rescue their situations. Statistics show that most patients for transplants come from the western world and most traverse the world to seek medical attention in the Far East where there is cheap, less regulated market for organs especially in India, Pakistan, Mongolia, Indonesia, and Philippines.

A common challenge that the recipients of organs suffer from is exploitation from organ brokers. In as much as brokers exploit poor donors to donate organs, the same degree of cunningness is employed to siphon vulnerable patients who are desperate to get organ transplants. Most vulnerable patients end up paying exorbitant prices for organs they would have acquired through legal means.

Incompatibility has also been quoted as a big problem in the aftermath of transplantation. Most deaths, which happen post-transplantation, are attributed to incompatibility. Vulnerable patients end up getting incompatible organs and cells from unscrupulous traders without any assurances or insurance covers. A study conducted in the United Kingdom in 2005 shows that out of 23 patients that underwent an organ transplant, 8 died shortly after their return from treatment abroad while 5 lost their kidneys shortly after the transplant. This translates to a figure of 56% failure rate as compared to a 44% success rate among the patients (Imran Sajjad, 2008).

Risks associated with the transplants in patients are major. Apart from the incompatibility, the risk starts by hunting for donors in countries with next to nil regulations on handling transplants and legislation to curb trafficking of organs. Free black markets are rampant in nations that are leading destinations for patients seeking treatment and organ transplantation. The question that remains unanswered is whether patients rank highest in the chain of organ trafficking (Valorie A Crooks, 2010). Patients are seen as the predators while donors are seen as prey, with predators willing to go all the way to secure the pray. Intermediaries including brokers and organ agents are mere conduits to ensure the dark trade outlives the legal regimes, the repercussions notwithstanding.

The Ethics of Organ Trafficking

Every development in the world comes with both positive and negative effects. The industrial revolution was the earliest cause of ethical analyses in advancements. The Nuremberg Trials are quoted as the earliest medical practices that gave rise to ethical issues arising in the field of medicine. Henceforth, major milestones in every field attract salutations and criticism in equal measure, and organ trade is just but one of the areas.

Equality in Accessing Medical Care in Organ Transplants; an Economic Inquiry

Organ transplant is an expensive venture and not many can easily afford the same procedure. High levels of poverty lead to unequal opportunity for accessing high-level medical products including organ transplants. The process of transplanting starts with the search for donors, then to the surgical procedure and to the rehabilitation stage after a successful transplant. All these stages require a huge monetary investment (Valorie A Crooks, 2010). The rich citizens of means can easily afford a successful transplant, while the poor may probably die in search of help from government health facilities that are choked by poor facilities and understaffing.

Private hospitals have taken advantage of the trend and have created their own economic niche where they benefit heavily from rich patients through offering packages that attract clients globally. There is an acute need to standardize affordability of medical services in order to accord the poor an equal footing to the rich. It all starts with federal governments which are tasked with developing policies and programmes to promote access to quality and affordable healthcare services (Noorzurani Robson, 2010). Research done in 2007 reveals that the United States of America and the European Union are the leading regions that have high prices for organ transplants. A knee replacement, for example, would cost one $12000 in India and $18000 in Argentina, while the same procedure cost $30,000 in the United States of America. This resulted in over 500,000 Americans travelling abroad in search of affordable health care (Herrick, 2007).

Reproductive health is another segment that has led to the cross-border movement of persons seeking to rectify reproductive anomalies. This too requires heavy financial output from the patients and very few can afford the same. Reproductive specialists abroad charge high amounts for consultations, medical procedures, medication and follow up appointments, thus relegating the poor to the periphery in the reproductive health circle. The poor therefore resort to second-hand methods of curing their problems, including traditional methods and others end up being exploited by quacks who take advantage of the situation.

Cite this paper

Organ Trafficking Transplant Tourism. (2021, Oct 05). Retrieved from https://samploon.com/organ-trafficking-transplant-tourism/

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