Should all Danes automatically be donors?

After a successful citizens' initiative the Danish parliament must now examine a reform of the legislation governing organ donation. Under the new rules all adult citizens would automatically be potential donors - unless they actively reject it. Danish media are critical of the reform.

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Kristeligt Dagblad (DK) /

No one can be forced to be generous

Kristeligt Dagblad speaks out against such a reform:

“Language is always a good place to track down problems. Up to now we have spoken of donating organs. It is a gift from one person to another. ... Now we are talking about extracting organs as a civic duty. But if you don't give away something of your own free will, it is no longer a gift. ... It would be right to maintain the perspective of organ donation as a gift and to see the active decision to donate an organ as a generous offer to another person.”

Politiken (DK) /

Encourage people to make a conscious decision

While there is no need for a reform many more people should be encouraged to actively consider organ donation, Politiken urges:

“The current model for organ donation is certainly not the best. Society must do more to encourage people to make a decision. And for that they need a little distance. There are better places for deciding whether or not you want to be an organ donor than the doctor's office, hospitals or pharmacies. For example, the question could come up in routine exchanges with the authorities - for example when applying for a passport or driver's license. ... That's where people should be encouraged to think about the issue and talk it over with their families. No one should be put under pressure to be an organ donor - but we owe it to our fellow humans to take an active decision.”