Brits ready to presume consent to organ donation

My libertarian side bristles at the thought of government staking a claim to my organs, my atheist side whispers that I won’t need them when I’m dead and other people will so stop being so superstitious. Tiebreaker goes to the atheist as long as there’s an opt-out provision, just because demand is great and much good would be done by recycling the supply (there’s a libertarian argument, I guess). I suspect most people are in my boat: Instinctive squeamishness stops me from acting affirmatively to sign any parts away, but knowing that they’re going to be taken away doesn’t bother me.

Although this does:

The Government will launch an overhaul of the system next week, which will put pressure on doctors and nurses to identify more “potential organ donors” from dying patients. Hospitals will be rated for the number of deceased patients they “convert” into donors and doctors will be expected to identify potential donors earlier and alert donor co-ordinators as patients approach death…

While polls show 90 per cent of Britons are in favour of organ donation, 40 per cent of relatives refuse consent for the organs of their relatives to be donated, a figure which rises to 75 per cent among black and ethnic minorities. To solve this, the organ taskforce plans measures to boost donation, including putting pressure on doctors to identify patients as potential donors before they have died

Dr Kevin Gunning, an intensive care consultant at Addenbrooke’s Hospital, Cambridge, and a member of the UK Transplant’s advisory group, said the measures could put doctors and relatives under pressure. “If, as a doctor you have turned your thoughts to your patient being a donor when they are still living, that is a real conflict.”

Did I read that first paragraph correctly? They’re going to move to a opt-in default — and then introduce quotas?