Patients criticise BMA 'hypocrisy' on organ donation consent

The BMA has been accused of 'hypocrisy' by a patient group for its stance on consent for patient records and organ donation.

Today the BMA’s Annual Representatives’ Meeting (ARM) in Edinburgh debates:

  1. That explicit consent should be required before uploading patients’ health records to the national data base: an ‘opt in’ rather than the current ‘opt out’ system should be used, and,
  2. That explicit consent should no longer be required for organ donation: an ‘opt out’ system should be used rather than the current ‘opt in’ system.

Joyce Robins, co-director of Patient Concern, said: ‘BMA leaders have been promoting both these policies vigorously for some time. We can only hope that BMA members will recognise this blatant hypocrisy and get their thinking straight but we won’t be holding our breath.

‘It seems that, for the BMA, ethics change according to what best suits doctors.

‘As patients, we should be able to have confidence that explicit informed consent will be sought for any decision that affects our bodies and our health care.’

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