The ambiguous lessons of the Iranian model of paid living kidney donation
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It is easy to understand why the question of whether or not we should allow the sale of human kidneys has inspired such impassioned debate. With the availability of transplantable kidneys falling short of demand throughout the developed world, financial incentives for living kidney donation are increasingly seen as an attractive means of addressing the organ shortage. However, the question of whether we should allow the sale of human organs remains far from settled. The prospect of organ markets raises a host of difficult questions, some philosophical (would they exploit sellers, or wrongfully commodify the human body?) and others empirical (would markets undermine living-related or deceased donation? Would sellers benefit from the opportunity to sell a kidney, or might they be left worse off in the long term?).
As the only current example of a legal and regulated market in transplantable kidneys, The Islamic Republic of Iran’s paid living-unrelated kidney donation program is deeply...
KeywordsOrgan transplantation Kidney donation Organ markets
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