More people sign organ donation register, nearly two million say ‘no’

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Some 6.3 million people in the Netherlands have now signed the organ donation register, of whom 3.7 million say they will donate their organs after death and 1.9 million say they won’t.

In total, 42% of the adult population have now registered their wishes, up from 40% four years ago. The number of people signing up who are opposed to donation outstripped the number of supporters three to two, the national statistics office CBS said on Thursday.

The Netherlands is due to implement a new law in 2020 which will operate on a ‘yes unless’ basis. In other words, everyone who does not express a preference will be considered a donor.




The debate surrounding the new legislation has encouraged more people to make their wishes known, the CBS said. ‘Things will change for people who don’t want to become a donor, so they are motivated to have their choice recorded,’ a spokesman for the CBS said.

A CBS map clearly shows the impact of religion on the choice whether or not to be a donor. In the Dutch Bible belt, there are many areas where fewer than 25% of the population has registered to be a donor.

The CBS also says that nearly 26% of Moroccan nationals have registered ‘no’ to organ donation. This may be because the population is relatively young, and don’t see the subject as relevant, or for religious considerations, the CBS said.


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