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Scarce resources: the ethics of intentional HIV-positive to HIV-negative organ transplantation in the United States

Brundage, Janetta (2021) Scarce resources: the ethics of intentional HIV-positive to HIV-negative organ transplantation in the United States. Undergraduate Thesis, University of Pittsburgh. (Unpublished)

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There is a major shortage of organs in the United States resulting in thousands of deaths per year. One main approach for responding to this crisis has been to consider expanding criteria for donation to increase the pool of available organs. The HIV Organ Policy Equity Act (HOPE Act) legalized HIV+ to HIV+ organ transplants, allowing HIV+ organs to be used in transplants in the U.S. for the first time. But even with this policy there is still untapped potential in considering HIV+ organs for transplant. Under current law HIV+ living donors cannot donate to HIV- recipients even if no alternative organ is available. Similarly, HIV- potential organ recipients are forbidden from accepting an HIV+ organ even if the organ would otherwise be discarded or would be given to a person on the waitlist who is in less desperate need of it. In the early years of the HIV pandemic these prohibitions were logical as HIV was a deadly disease with no effective treatment. Yet today this is no longer the case and people living with HIV can live long fulfilling lives. As such, legalizing HIV+ to HIV- organ transplantation in the United States has great potential to save lives and improve quality of life. This essay will explore the risks and benefits of this procedure and argue that it is prudent to legalize HIV+ to HIV- transplantation.


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Item Type: University of Pittsburgh ETD
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Brundage, JanettaJAB488@pitt.eduJAB488
ETD Committee:
TitleMemberEmail AddressPitt UsernameORCID
Committee ChairDegenholtz,
Committee MemberTheunissen,
Committee MemberPallikkathayil,
Committee MemberSegev,
Date: 23 April 2021
Date Type: Publication
Defense Date: 2 April 2021
Approval Date: 23 April 2021
Submission Date: 20 April 2021
Access Restriction: No restriction; Release the ETD for access worldwide immediately.
Number of Pages: 51
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: David C. Frederick Honors College
Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences > Philosophy
Degree: BPhil - Bachelor of Philosophy
Thesis Type: Undergraduate Thesis
Refereed: Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords: HIV Organ Transplant Ethics HOPE
Date Deposited: 23 Apr 2021 13:31
Last Modified: 23 Apr 2021 13:31


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