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Family informed consent to organ donation--who performs better: organ procurement organizations, in-hospital coordinators, or intensive care unit professionals?

Family informed consent to organ donation--who performs better: organ procurement organizations, in-hospital coordinators, or intensive care unit professionals?

Transplantation Proceedings 46(6): 1672-1673

Successful organ donation in countries adopting informed consent legislation depends on adequate interviewing of potential donors' families. As the number of both referral and effective donors in Brazil increases, health care managers argue whether educational efforts should be directed toward training in-hospital coordinators (IHC)--based on the "Spanish model"--or on the creation of extra-hospital-based professionals (Organ Procurement Organizations [OPOs], the "American model"). Meanwhile, many potential donor families are still approached by intensive care unit (ICU) professionals not trained in donation interviews. The aim of our study was to compare performances in obtaining informed consent from potential donors' families, according to the type of health care professional conducting the interviews: OPO, IHC, or ICU staff. In this retrospective 2-year study performed in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, we observed an increase in referrals (285 to 411) and consent rates (48.1% to 55.7%). Each year, OPO professionals conducted most family interviews (58.6% and 60.4%, respectively) and obtained better consent rates (63.5% and 64.5%, respectively), when compared to IHC (41.8% and 53.7%, respectively) or untrained ICU professionals (22.1% and 13.4%, respectively). Our results show that adequate professional training is necessary for obtaining family consent for organ donation. Both established international policies for organ procurement and donation, namely the "Spanish model" with its IHCs or the "American model" of extra-hospital OPOs, may equally achieve this task. However, family interviews performed by untrained ICU professionals result in low donation rates and should be discouraged.

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Accession: 053206516

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PMID: 25131009

DOI: 10.1016/j.transproceed.2014.05.036

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