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A profile of Australian adults who have discussed their posthumous organ donation wishes with family members
journal contributionposted on 2010-01-01, 00:00 authored by Joshua NewtonJoshua Newton, S Burney, M Hay, Mike Ewing
Next of kin who are aware of the deceased's organ donation wishes usually will honor those wishes, while next of kin who are unaware of these wishes typically withhold consent for posthumous donation. Encouraging individuals to communicate or register their organ donation wishes is therefore important. Using a sample of 409 participants, the current study sought to develop a profile of Australian adults who had communicated their organ donation wishes to family members. Christian participants and those who had a higher income were more likely to have communicated their donation wishes. Conversely, participants were less likely to have communicated their donation wishes if they were unregistered and undecided/opposed to organ donation, unregistered but willing to donate, or fearful of death. Finally, whether participants had communicated, registered, or communicated and registered their donation wishes was associated with their age, religion, attitude toward organ donation, and recall of media content about organ donation. Messages encouraging the communication of organ donation wishes to family members should therefore be targeted toward those individuals who are most likely to be receptive toward enacting this behavior.