Attitude toward deceased organ donation and transplantation among the workers in the surgical services in a hospital with a transplant program

A Ríos, C Conesa, P Ramírez, P J Galindo, L Martínez, M J Montoya, J A Pons, M M Rodríguez, P Parrilla
Transplantation Proceedings 2005, 37 (9): 3603-8

INTRODUCTION: There are data that suggest that the percentage of hospital workers not in favor of donation is relatively high, even in services that are directly related to transplantation. The objective was to analyze attitudes toward decreased organ donation in the surgical services.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: A random sample was stratified by the surgical service and the job category (n = 263) in a third-level hospital with a transplant program assessed attitudes toward the donation of ones own organs after death using a questionnaire including psychosocial factors as validated in our geographic surroundings. Student t test and the chi-square test were used for data analysis.

RESULTS: Favorable attitudes toward donation were observed in 68% (n = 178) as opposed to 32% with an attitude that was undecided or against the act (n = 85). The psychosocial variables that showed significant relationships with this attitude were age (most in favor are younger; P = .021); nonmedical surgical staff (50% against donation; P = .0001); resident physicians (94% in favor; P = .001); discussion and prior consideration of donation (P = .016); knowledge of the concept of brain death (an important factor in nonhealth staff; P = .010); attitude toward manipulation of the deceased (P = .011) and concerns about mutilation (P = .026); partner's opinion toward organ donation (P = .0001); and existence of frequent medical errors (P = .003). No significant differences were found, depending on whether the services were involved in a specific transplant program (P = .853).

CONCLUSIONS: Favorable attitudes toward donation among the hospital staff on surgical services, including those who perform transplants, did not reach more than 70% and was determined by multiple psychosocial factors. Donation promotion activities are necessary for these services, given the importance that this group's negative attitude could have on the attitude of the general population.

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