Only about 45 percent of adults in the U.S. — nearly 109 million people — are organ donors, a figure that donation and transplant experts say seems tragically low when the public’s attention is riveted on the lack of organs for a child such as Sarah. ...I doubt it, as Christians seem to donate more than other religions.
My theory, which is mine, is that this reluctance is based largely on a religious fear that if they take out an organ when you die, you’ll show up in heaven without a kidney or a liver!
My theory is not even mentioned by him or his commenters. The donors cannot be lawfully paid in the USA. Dick Cheney probably paid $200k for his heart transplant surgery, but not a penny went to the man who supplied the heart.
I don't think that there are any good medical or economic reasons against paying donors. Apparently some people have some sort of ethical or religious objection. Since Coyne likes to attack irrational superstitions, it is funny that he does not attack this one.
Update: Gary S. Becker and Julio J. Elias write in the WSJ:
Finding a way to increase the supply of organs would reduce wait times and deaths, and it would greatly ease the suffering that many sick individuals now endure while they hope for a transplant. The most effective change, we believe, would be to provide compensation to people who give their organs—that is, we recommend establishing a market for organs.Maybe the organ donors ought to go on strike.
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