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Asking the difficult questions: message strategies used by organ procurement coordinators in requesting familial consent to organ donation

Asking the difficult questions: message strategies used by organ procurement coordinators in requesting familial consent to organ donation

Journal of Health Communication 16(6): 643-659

The present study provides an in-depth examination of the messages used by organ procurement coordinators (OPCs) in shaping familial requests for organ donation. OPCs (N = 102), recruited from a national sample of 16 organ procurement organizations, participated in a structured interview designed to uncover the communication strategies used in obtaining familial consent for donation. Analysis of interviews indicates OPCs' messages cover 4 domain areas. Specifically, OPCs report use of messages intended to (a) provide education, (b) discuss the benefits to donation, (c) learn about potential donor families, and (d) persuade families to engage in donation. Within the 4 domain areas, OPCs report use of 15 specific messages (e.g., "positively framing the donor," "social proof," "discuss the benefit of donation to grieving") in requesting consent. The present study provides a detailed examination of strategies and offers recommendations for using message strategies to explore the effectiveness of the consent process from the perspective of OPCs in approaching donor families.

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Accession: 051646066

Download citation: RISBibTeXText

PMID: 21491309

DOI: 10.1080/10810730.2011.551999

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