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pie-eater

Did He Deserve A New Liver?

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Guest Skinty
He deserved it more than the 40+ foreign recipients of British organs last year. By that I mean the organs left the country.

Well that's something new that I've learnt today:

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/health/healthne...n-patients.html

Mr Papoutsis, a former merchant seaman, said: "I will be eternally grateful to the Greek and British hospital system, and especially to the British family of the donor. I carry part of an Englishman inside me, so that will for ever keep me close to that country."

He decided to come to Britain for the operation as a way of by-passing Greek waiting lists.

Mr Papoutsis said: ""I got on the list in Greece, but could not find a quick solution, so I also tried in England. There the reception and treatment I received was excellent. I will never forget it.

"I visited three times before the operation was actually done. During my second visit to London I went through tests and was approved. Then I waited. Suddenly I got a call from London. The opportunity had arisen. There was a donor. In one week it was all done after a wait in Greece and England that had lasted six months."

But Jane Dodd, whose nine-year-old daughter Rebecca died while waiting for a similar liver transplant, has spoken out against organs being made available to foreigners when British people are still on the waiting list.

The Department of Health last night announced it was clamping down on hospitals carrying out transplant on non-EU patients in cases when a suitable British recipient could have been found.

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Guest Skinty

Aha! This is where the number 40 came from it seems ...

Outrage over organs ‘sold to foreigners’

THE organs of 50 British National Health Service donors have been given to foreign patients who have paid about £75,000 each for private transplant operations in the past two years, freedom of information documents show.

The liver transplants took place at NHS hospitals, despite severe shortages that mean many British patients die while waiting for an organ that could save their lives.

The documents disclose that 40 patients from Greece and Cyprus received liver transplants in the UK paid for by their governments. Donated livers were also given to people from non-European Union countries including Libya, the United Arab Emirates, China and Israel.

The surgeons who carry out the transplants receive a share of the operation fee — believed to be about £20,000 — as all the work is done privately in NHS hospitals.

It comes as a record 8,000 Britons are on NHS lists waiting for transplant organs. About 260 British patients are waiting for a liver.

Last week leading transplant surgeons and patient groups called for an end to the practice. Professor Peter Friend, president of the British Transplantation Society, said it was unethical to give organs to people from abroad while British patients were dying.

“While there is a surfeit of UK residents awaiting transplant it is correct that these patients should have priority,†he said. “Were the situation such that there were organs that were not required, it would be appropriate to make them available to other nationals.

“We do not have a European organ donation system; it is a UK system and I therefore feel that . . . the system is there essentially for the benefit of residents in the UK.â€

Jane Dodd, whose nine-year-old daughter Rebecca died while waiting for a liver transplant, said she was shocked and upset to hear that organs from British donors have been given to overseas patients.

Dodd, a part-time bank clerk from Wirral, who also has a 19-year-old son, Matthew, whose life was saved by a liver transplant, said: “I do feel that organs donated in this country should go to people from this country unless there isn’t a suitable recipient.

“If you are signing a donor card in this country you expect someone from this country to get the organ.â€

The Healthcare Commission, a watchdog body, conducted brief inquiries last summer after being alerted to the practice at King’s College Hospital NHS Foundation Trust in London, but decided it was not breaking any rules. It referred the matter to the Department of Health.

The documents show that another hospital, the Royal Free Hampstead NHS Trust in London, has also carried out four liver transplants on foreign patients in the past year, the most recent being in November.

Despite the criticism, King’s College hospital said last week that it would be “business as usual†and surgeons would continue to give British organs to overseas patients in private operations.

The hospital gave livers from British donors to 19 overseas patients last year.

A spokesman for King’s College hospital said: “We are continuing to treat citizens of the European Union as they have the same entitlement to treatment under the NHS as UK patients under European law.â€

Under European law , patients from member states have a right to seek treatment in other European countries. Britain is not obliged to treat these patients, however, and the decision is left to individual hospital trusts.

If the trusts do decide to perform transplants on patients from elsewhere in Europe, they must give them equal access to British organs as those who live in the UK. When an organ becomes available, a recipient is selected according to the severity of his or her condition and the blood group.

Some leading transplant hospitals refuse to carry out such operations. Dr Mervyn Davies, a consultant hepatologist at St James’s University hospital in Leeds, which does not carry out private transplants on overseas patients, said: “There is a shortage of donors and we cannot cater for the whole of the EU.

“It is tragic for these patients but the system that we have cannot cope with the UK demand as it is. Extending that to the whole of the EU and beyond we consider is inappropriate.â€

EU rules say patients from outside the bloc should be offered an organ only if it is not considered of a high enough standard or suitable for a patient in the UK.

Transplant surgeons argue, however, that if livers can save the lives of patients from Israel, Libya and the United Arab Emirates, they must be of a sufficiently high standard to treat a British patient.

The Department of Health has admitted there are concerns about the issue and is understood to be in talks with the European commission seeking clarification.

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Disgusting. The surgeons are as much to blame as they are milking NHS resources to fund their private work and making a packet out of it.

Make the rich richer and the poor can fook off?

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Disgusting. The surgeons are as much to blame as they are milking NHS resources to fund their private work and making a packet out of it.

Make the rich richer and the poor can fook off?

Shut the whole thing down.

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Well that's something new that I've learnt today:

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/health/healthne...n-patients.html

Currently living in Crete, and the number of ex-pat brits who come here for cancer treatment -the drug which was unavailable for breast cancer in the uk was freely available here in Crete and many came here and were prescribed it...was it herceptin or some such..old memory failing...also for heart surgeries without a waiting list -triple/quadruple heart bypasses, all done on the greek health service,its not all a one way street.

IMHO the mother of this young man should be jailed for permitting him to binge drink at 13 and to continue to drink to this extent, she is in my eyes guilty of child neglect/abuse and any father if there be one on the scene

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Probably.

Still wonder what the mums on about. What was she doing about it when her 13 year old son was getting p1ssed. Hardly the govts fault. He was her responsibility. And, as per usual, wheres the daddy at?

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Probably.

Still wonder what the mums on about. What was she doing about it when her 13 year old son was getting p1ssed. Hardly the govts fault. He was her responsibility. And, as per usual, wheres the daddy at?

She wants compensation, innit?

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Probably.

Still wonder what the mums on about. What was she doing about it when her 13 year old son was getting p1ssed.

We don't know for sure that she wasn't doing enough, but that question is certainly raised.

Hardly the govts fault. He was her responsibility.

The government bears some responsibility, and for two reasons. Firstly, the sale of alcohol is legal but regulated, i.e. the government charges a tax on alcohol which it justifies by claiming that it's intended to cover the cost of treating alcohol-related problems. Secondly and more specifically, it has created a system that penalises and discourages social drinking (i.e. in pubs, bars and other communal, licensed social spaces) and encourages and incentivises drinking at home in an unregulated way (i.e. because it has heaped extra burdens and expenses on pubs, while enabling supermarkets to sell very strong booze almost as a loss-leader).

If we're going to speculate what went wrong in this case, my £0.02 is that most of his drink came from a supermarket and was consumed in places where there was no social pressure either to moderate his drinking, or to drink alongside other activities at the same time, e.g. talking to friends, playing pool or whatever.

He certainly must bear some if not most responsibility for the way he ended up, but not all. The government was happy to pocket the duty on the booze that poisoned him, and therefore IMO they should have offered him the transplant. The government can't have its own cake and eat it: either it pockets the booze duty and uses the money to treat booze-related illnesses, or it abolishes booze duty and anyone who comes down with an alcohol-related illness must bear the cost of treating it themselves.

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Guest Skinty
:huh:Of course he did

We're on a very slippery slope if we start vetting people's worthiness for organs based on their personal lives

But they do have a criteria that the patient has to be off the booze for 6 months before being given a transplant. If the patient cannot abstain for that long before the operation, there is even less chance of him managing it after the operation.

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But they do have a criteria that the patient has to be off the booze for 6 months before being given a transplant. If the patient cannot abstain for that long before the operation, there is even less chance of him managing it after the operation.

I don't think he got the chance to have 6 months on the wagon.

Admitted ill and died.

He must have really been into it hard from day 1.

You've got to question parenting in this case. When I was 13 I'd get a whack from my Mum if came home even smelling of cigs!

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Guest anorthosite

Everyone deserves a new organ if their's is failing, but when resources are limited, tough decisions have to be made.

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Everyone deserves a new organ if their's is failing, but when resources are limited, tough decisions have to be made.

Agreed. Everyone should deserve a new organ but until there are enough donors I fear everyone doesn't deserve one.

And that means doctors decide whether putting a new organ into somebody is likely to be a complete waste of time, particularly when there is the alternative of putting it into somebody else and doing some long term good.

I'd rather have the doctors deciding this than politicians, media, or some bloke down the pub that the media have talked to. But even more I'd prefer there to be enough donor organs.

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Agreed. Everyone should deserve a new organ but until there are enough donors I fear everyone doesn't deserve one.

And that means doctors decide whether putting a new organ into somebody is likely to be a complete waste of time, particularly when there is the alternative of putting it into somebody else and doing some long term good.

I'd rather have the doctors deciding this than politicians, media, or some bloke down the pub that the media have talked to. But even more I'd prefer there to be enough donor organs.

Agree with your general sentiments, but we must be careful not to unconditionally 'worship' the medics: My career has brought me into regular contact with many consultants, and only about 1/10 leave me thinking that patient interests come higher to them than either their egos, their bank balances or both.

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Agree with your general sentiments, but we must be careful not to unconditionally 'worship' the medics: My career has brought me into regular contact with many consultants, and only about 1/10 leave me thinking that patient interests come higher to them than either their egos, their bank balances or both.

I fear Melchett old bean we have a Catch22 here.People who attain these (relatively) dizzy heights of skill and qualification inevitably have a bit of this attitude.I remember going to a restaurant once with the man who is currently our sitting MP and his treatment of the staff as inferiors shocked me.If they have the drive and ambition to climb the greasy pole the temptation to exploit their elevated position by pissing on those beneath is often just too much too resist.

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http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/london/8159813.stm

Sad story, but would he have just smashed his new liver to bits like George Best did?

Hard to say really, certainly with his track record the chances of him remaining temperate and not obliterating his new liver would have been slim.

Beyond this immediate issue though, I do strongly feel that one should only merit a transplant if you are prepared to go on the organ donor list yourself.

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