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Journal of Transplantation
Volume 2014, Article ID 296912, 6 pages
Research Article

Attitude of Healthcare Professionals: A Major Limiting Factor in Organ Donation from Brain-Dead Donors

1Department of General and Transplantation Surgery, Medical University of Warsaw, 02-006 Warsaw, Poland
2Department of Health Psychology, Children’s Memorial Health Institute, 00-999 Warsaw, Poland
3CBOS Public Opinion Research Center, 00-503 Warsaw, Poland
4Specialist Hospital in Jaslo, 38-200 Jaslo, Poland
5Polish Transplant Coordinating Center “Poltransplant”, 02-001 Warsaw, Poland
6Department of Surgical and Transplant Nursing, Medical University of Warsaw, 02-007 Warsaw, Poland
7Polish Union for Transplantation Medicine, 00-820 Warsaw, Poland

Received 9 April 2014; Accepted 9 September 2014; Published 30 September 2014

Academic Editor: F. H J. Claas

Copyright © 2014 Maciej Kosieradzki et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Public attitude toward deceased donor organ recovery in Poland is quite positive, with only 15% opposing to donation of their own organs, yet actual donation rate is only 16/pmp. Moreover, donation rate varies greatly (from 5 to 28 pmp) in different regions of the country. To identify the barriers of organ donation, we surveyed 587 physicians involved in brain death diagnosis from regions with low (LDR) and high donation rates (HDR). Physicians from LDR were twice more reluctant to start diagnostic procedure when clinical signs of brain death were present (14% versus 5.5% physicians from HDR who would not diagnose death, resp.). Twenty-five percent of LDR physicians (as opposed to 12% of physicians from HDR) would either continue with intensive therapy or confirm brain death and limit to the so-called minimal therapy. Only 32% of LDR physicians would proceed with brain death diagnosis regardless of organ donation, compared to 67% in HDR. When donation was not an option, mechanical ventilation would be continued more often in LDR regions (43% versus 26.7%; . In conclusion, low donation activity seems to be mostly due to medical staff attitude.