Organ Donation and Homosexuals - page 9

Hey everyone. I had a pt come into the ER in full cardiac arrest. Didn't make it. 56 yr old really sad. He had a life partner who was extremely distraught and actually signed in to get medication... Read More

  1. by   kenny b
    Quote from smoo
    You know, if myself or a family member was going to die without a transplant of some kind and there was another person willing to donate I would take it regardless of sexual preference. I guess I just don't understand. It's sad to think someone's life could have possibly been saved, but because the person was homosexual he couldn't donate an organ to save that life.

    What if it is a heterosexual who has had an active sex life? Are they disqualified too?

    smoo
    It is sad. But I suspect that IF it is the official policy, then it is probably liability-driven. Not THAT is really sad. While a great deal of good has come from the right to sue, certainly frivolous lawsuits have cost lives and created suffering in a far-reaching way.

    Please recall that there was a group of lawyers prepared to sue the builders of the twin towers because it had supposedly not been built to withstand the direct impact of an airliner.

    Regards,
    Kenny B.
  2. by   i_am_acat
    Its rather sad. Screening organs are judged on arbitrary standards. What is "high risk" anyway? Furthermore, it isn't only gays who have anal sex; a surprising number of hetersexual couples do too.
  3. by   suzannelb3
    Tweety, you hit the nail on the head. Sometimes people are so narrow-minded that they don't see the big picture.
  4. by   RN34TX
    Quote from Pilotboy
    Homosexual men are many times more likely to be infected with AIDS than a heterosexual man. So putting the political correctness aside, it is good policy not to let these individuals donate. One could be offended because of the philosophical aspect of it, however, there are things that ought to be and then there are things that are. If a patient is infected with AIDS through organ donation and the hospital knew the individual had the abnormal lifestyle, the hospital could and probably would be sued for negligence, and rightly so.
    Some of you were making the argument that there are many heterosexuals with risky lifestyles as well, but because there is no way of finding out each person's past, the best that can be done is to go on what is statistically known for a group. Didn't you all have to take statistics? I know what I am talking about; I am an attorney who used to represent clients who sued hospitals. If I threatened with a lawsuit over a matter like this, do you know how quickly the hospital would settle out of court because they know I would win in litigation? I am now leaving that field and getting my BSN.
    "Abnormal lifestyle"?
    Haven't heard that one in a long time and I live in ultra-conservative South TX. Makes me feel like I'm part of some radical cult like the Manson Family or something.

    Anyway, yes there are things that should be and things that are, I agree.
    As a gay man, I accept the fact that I cannot donate blood. My hospital continues to whine about major shortages trying to get employees to donate all of the time and I must simply shrug my shoulders and say "I can't help you". That's the way it is today.

    Meanwhile I get to watch my straight co-workers who pick up new guys at the bar every weekend (some of whom don't even use protection) and have 3-4 children from 3-4 different fathers give blood on a regular basis.

    Statistically, I wonder which employees in this hospital are more likely to be infected with HIV?
    Oh I know, it's the gay guy who's had the same exclusive partner for 4 years and gets tested at least yearly.

    Good luck to you in your BSN program. My program likes to really harp on cultural competence and sensitivity. I've learned a lot about things from Vietnamese to Italian traditions and healthcare beliefs/practices.

    No mention has ever made in all of this cultural sensitivity coursework or any of our textbooks about interacting with gay patients and their families.

    I've brought it to the school's attention and am trying to get it changed and you are a great example of why it's so important to me.

    The thought of any school granting a nursing degree to anyone who is so distant from, and disconnected with, the gay community that they still refer to it as an "abnormal lifestyle" someday becoming my nurse really scares the heck out of me.

    I hope your nursing program is better than mine at teaching students how to become competent practitioners with respect to gay patients because no matter where you live or work, you will be taking care of gay people, and hopefully you will give them the care that they deserve.
  5. by   rambisisking
    Quote from RN34TX
    "Abnormal lifestyle"?
    Haven't heard that one in a long time and I live in ultra-conservative South TX. Makes me feel like I'm part of some radical cult like the Manson Family or something.

    Anyway, yes there are things that should be and things that are, I agree.
    As a gay man, I accept the fact that I cannot donate blood. My hospital continues to whine about major shortages trying to get employees to donate all of the time and I must simply shrug my shoulders and say "I can't help you". That's the way it is today.

    Meanwhile I get to watch my straight co-workers who pick up new guys at the bar every weekend (some of whom don't even use protection) and have 3-4 children from 3-4 different fathers give blood on a regular basis.

    Statistically, I wonder which employees in this hospital are more likely to be infected with HIV?
    Oh I know, it's the gay guy who's had the same exclusive partner for 4 years and gets tested at least yearly.

    Good luck to you in your BSN program. My program likes to really harp on cultural competence and sensitivity. I've learned a lot about things from Vietnamese to Italian traditions and healthcare beliefs/practices.

    No mention has ever made in all of this cultural sensitivity coursework or any of our textbooks about interacting with gay patients and their families.

    I've brought it to the school's attention and am trying to get it changed and you are a great example of why it's so important to me.

    The thought of any school granting a nursing degree to anyone who is so distant from, and disconnected with, the gay community that they still refer to it as an "abnormal lifestyle" someday becoming my nurse really scares the heck out of me.

    I hope your nursing program is better than mine at teaching students how to become competent practitioners with respect to gay patients because no matter where you live or work, you will be taking care of gay people, and hopefully you will give them the care that they deserve.


    "Abnormal Lifestyle" ha ha ha ha ha ha ha
    Please give us the definetion of a "Normal Lifestyle"

    As far as I know...Normal is a setting on my washing machine. That's about it.

    Shame on you
  6. by   ByTheLake
    Quote from mysticalwaters1
    I can see that with anal sex you can cause tearing more and transmit aids and that is probably the high risk the criteria is for but is ther percentage that great to reject organs for donation? I heard people with tatoos are rejected for blood (I don't know about organ donation).
    Not only that, but with anal sex and increase chance of tearing, there is an increased chance of infection considering poop is what, 40-60% bacteria if I'm remembering correctly from Micro.

    I mentioned this to my friend and instantly she states it's like this because aids is "astronomical" in homosexual populations. Is that really so
    Sadly, the rates are higher among homosexual men than in any other demographic. Previously the rates of increase were higher in other groups, but this particular demographic is again outstripping others in new cases. Very sad. And again, anal sex increases risk of catching all sorts of things, not just aids.

    Is this risk really that relavant? And should it be deemed "high risk."
    For now, apparently it is. I don't think they would be rejected as organ donators for purely political reasons. HOpefully in the future we will have better screening, better prevention, and better studies so that this and other groups currently considered "high risk" can be included in organ donation pools.
  7. by   RN34TX
    If I see one more post about anal sex and gay men...........well I don't know.

    Not all gay men engage in anal sex and plenty of straight folks do engage in this practice. We all know this so let's keep that in mind.

    In addition, we all know that this is not the end-all only way to contract HIV and thus makes for a very weak arguement for organ donation exclusion.

    But if no one wants my organs or blood...it's not hurting me any, it's only hurting a paranoid and/or ignorant public.

    Stay on your organ waiting lists for another year or 10 waiting for a straight man's kidney. Now that makes sense.
  8. by   AMY30
    You asked-
    "Is this risk really that relavant? And should it be deemed "high risk." And one article I read type cast homosexuals in general so what about lesbians? I know donations have to be screened excessively but is this too much?"


    Accord to the WHO Report Aids Surveillance in the America Annual Report June 2004 available at[URL="http://www.paho.org/English/AD/FCH/AI/Bulletin_AIDS_Surveillance_June_2004.pdf"]Page 15

    Percentage of AIDS cases by Category of Exposure in North America between 1979-2003 were as follows:

    Homosexuals - 51%
    Intravenous Drug Use - 24%
    Heterosexuals - 12%
    Other risks - 10%
    Hemophelia & transfusions - 2%
    Perinatal - 1%
    Unknown risk 0.15%

    So i am assuming that these types of decisions would be based on these types of numbers. Hope this helps.
  9. by   lorster
    Quote from Tweety
    I didn't realize that. I suppose you can't be too careful.

    Do they reject nurses on the same grounds? My being a nurse is more hazardous to my health than my sex life has been.

    LOL Tweety, Amen to that
  10. by   navynurse06
    "I heard people with tatoos are rejected for blood (I don't know about organ donation)."

    People with tatoos can give blood. They just have to wait one year after the tatoo. And we can still donate our organs.
    I know b/c I have one!
  11. by   amandarez
    This is posted on the UNOS website (that is the group that runs the transplant national lists that match pts with donors):

    "For any death where organ donation is a possibility and consent is given, there will be a medical assessment of what organs can be recovered. There are no absolute age limits to organ donation. A handful of medical conditions will rule out organ donation, such as HIV-positive status, actively spreading cancer (except for primary brain tumors that have not spread beyond the brain stem), or certain severe, current infections. However, for most other diseases or chronic medical conditions, organ donation remains possible."

    So unless the pt was HIV + or had cancer there was absolutely NO REASON to exclude him from being a partial donor of something. I believe they are also required to do HIV testing on the donor.

    It sounds like someone's personal feelings became involved and resulted in the death or continued suffering of someone on the transplant list.
    Last edit by amandarez on Oct 10, '06
  12. by   EricJRN
    It doesn't sound like that's an all-inclusive list to me though, amandarez.
  13. by   saudi-nurse
    realy as a nurse we r high risk of infection or self but anyway i can,t donate my self because i got skill cell
    thax 4 sharing

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