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60 People, 30 Transplants

Via Donald Marron:

The trick is finding those matches and extending them to larger groups. Today’s New York Times has a moving article that illustrates how far this idea has come. Kevin Sack recounts how the 60 people shown above were linked through a chain of 30 kidney transplants thanks to the efforts of Garet Hil and the National Kidney Registry. The first donor,Rick Ruzzamenti (upper left), is a good samaritan who felt inspired to give a kidney to a stranger. The other 29 donors all donated on behalf of a friend or relative.

Those of us who find something deeply unsettling about paying for non-regenerating, non-replaceable organs, namely, its potential to reduce human beings to the dollar amount of their vital organs, need to come up with creative ways to increase the number of transplants.  “Thousands of additional patients each year,” sounds like a good thing.

Posted in Economics, Health Care.