Payments for Living Kidney Donation: Reconsidering the Assumption that Sellers would Benefit
Julian Koplin (Monash University Centre for Human Bioethics)

October 29, 2014, 7:00am - 8:30am
SHAPS, Philosophy, CAPPE, University of Melbourne

142A (Old Quad)
University of Melbourne, Old Quad, Parkville

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ABSTRACT: Most defenders of organ markets claim that many impoverished individuals could benefit from the opportunity to sell a kidney in a regulated system. Moreover, many opponents of organ markets have conceded this claim, and place the wrongness of kidney sales elsewhere. I argue that it is premature to conclude that kidney markets will benefit sellers;the existing medical and ethnographic literature on legal and unregulated organ markets provides reasons to believe that even a well-regulated system of financial incentives would likely inflict serious harms on kidney sellers.  Although this conclusion does not provide an all-things-considered case against organ markets, I argue that the likely harms to kidney sellers is not only an important moral consideration in its own right, but that it also has implications for arguments related to autonomy, exploitation and social solidarity.  

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