Organ donation in the ICU - a survey on next of kin response in two Swiss academic centres.

Nebiker, Mathias; Bloch, Andreas; Fedakar, Pelin; Christen, Lucienne; Hurni, Anita; Carré, Delphine; Cluzet, Sylvie; Eckert, Philippe; Schefold, Joerg C. (2021). Organ donation in the ICU - a survey on next of kin response in two Swiss academic centres. Swiss medical weekly, 151, w20515. EMH Media 10.4414/smw.2021.20515

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AIM OF THE STUDY

In the Swiss population, attitudes to organ donation are mostly positive. However, a high refusal rate by the next of kin may be observed. We aimed to investigate potential underlying reasons.

METHODS

In two independent Swiss tertiary care academic centres 167 next of kin were confronted with potential organ donation, over a period of 18 to 24 months. Of these, 147 could be contacted and were asked ≥6 months later to participate in a post-hoc survey (72-item questionnaire). Aspects related to conversations, time and care in the intensive care unit (ICU), underlying concepts for organ donation, impact on mourning, and other potential influencing factors were addressed.

RESULTS

The overall return rate was 66%. Seventy four of 77 (96%) next of kin stated that the request for organ donation was appropriate and they agreed to address the issue. Personal attitudes of next of kin regarding organ donation correlated with the decision for or against organ donation (p <0.0001). Thirteen percent (8/62) reported that conversations with ICU physicians changed their decision. In 56% (18/32) of reports when organ donation was refused, the next of kin stated that presence of a documented will might have changed their decisions. Mourning was reported to be impaired by the request for organ donation in 8% (6/71), facilitated in 14% (10/71) and not affected in 77% (55/71) of cases. Twenty-seven percent (16/59) indicated that an opt-out policy for organ donation would subjectively have facilitated their decision and 81% (34/42) of consenting next of kin stated that an objection law should be put into place (p <0.0001).

CONCLUSIONS

In this observational study, the majority of the next of kin stated that addressing organ donation did not affect mourning. Presence of a presumed will could likely facilitate grief and provide comfort for affected families. (Trial registration: ClinicalTrials.gov. Identifier: NCT03612024. Date of registration: 24 July 2018.).

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)

Division/Institute:

04 Faculty of Medicine > Department of Intensive Care, Emergency Medicine and Anaesthesiology (DINA) > Clinic of Intensive Care

UniBE Contributor:

Nebiker, Mathias; Bloch, Andreas and Schefold, Jörg Christian

Subjects:

600 Technology > 610 Medicine & health

ISSN:

1424-3997

Publisher:

EMH Media

Language:

English

Submitter:

Jsabelle Arni

Date Deposited:

01 Jul 2021 11:06

Last Modified:

04 Jul 2021 03:08

Publisher DOI:

10.4414/smw.2021.20515

PubMed ID:

34161597

BORIS DOI:

10.48350/157223

URI:

https://boris.unibe.ch/id/eprint/157223

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