Tax Credits Proposed for Organ Donations

June 4, 2010 Taxation in Canada

flickr - wtf?A new tax credit has been proposed for organ donations in Canada, in an effort to increase the number of donations made annually and reduce the waiting time for transplant consent.

At the 2010 Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences, which ran from May 28th to June 4th at Montreal’s Concordia University, Jurgen De Wispelaere, researcher at Université de Montréal, presented a paper with suggested reforms to the nation’s organ transplant procedures. His proposal includes two primary reform measures. The first involves the initiation of an expanded national donor registry system, which will include the details of third-party individuals authorised to give final transplant consent on a donor’s nehalf. The second proposal is the creation of a Government tax credit system awarding those who become the “second consenter”, regardless of whether the organs are used or not.

The research did not allocate a specific tax credit amount, but adamantly contested that it should be small and “iconic”. Opposition to the proposal has already argued that the tax credit is tantamount to the condoned national sale of organs. Jurgen De Wispelaere consented that the entire proposal is problematic, but continued to say that the idea is not a sale but merely an encouragement for individuals to take on the “second consenter” role. His research indicated that nearly 50 percent of possible organs donations across Canada are not fully utilized due to the time required to receive family consent or to clarify the wishes of the deceased. Explaining the benefit of his proposal, Jurgen De Wispelaere, said, “The advantage is that all the tricky questions are resolved in advance rather then when the person is in a comatose state.”

Photo by derfotobulle