ASN's Mission

ASN leads the fight to prevent, treat, and cure kidney diseases throughout the world by educating health professionals and scientists, advancing research and innovation, communicating new knowledge, and advocating for the highest quality care for patients.

learn more

Contact ASN

1401 H St, NW, Ste 900, Washington, DC 20005

email@asn-online.org

202-640-4660

The Latest on Twitter

Kidney Week

Abstract: TH-PO1168

Attitudes and Beliefs About Organ Donation in a Cohort of Physicians Attending Medical Grand Rounds

Session Information

Category: Transplantation

  • 1902 Transplantation: Clinical

Authors

  • Markell, Mariana S., SUNY Downstate Medical Center, Brooklyn, New York, United States
  • Cerrato, Annette, SUNY Downstate Medical Center, Brooklyn, New York, United States
  • Salifu, Moro O., SUNY Downstate Medical Center, Brooklyn, New York, United States
Background

Lack of referral of appropriate candidates for deceased donor evaluation may result from attitudes or education of the primary physician.

Methods

We evaluated the knowledge, attitudes and beliefs of a cohort of physicians attending Medical Grand Rounds at a University teaching hospital using a validated questionnaire which was returned anonymously to a box. It contains questions related to brain death, willingness to donate and perception of fairness in the system, using yes/no answers and 5-point Likert scales. Between group comparisons were performed with X square and associations by Pearson r or Spearman rho.

Results

12 Faculty and 28 Resident physicians responded. There were 13 men and 27 women, 3 Black, 17 Asian, 14 Caucasian, and 4 other, with 13 identified as Atheist/unaffiliated, 9 Muslim, 5 Jewish, 9 Christian, 3 Hindu. 17 (43%) had signed an organ donor card (ORGD) and they were more likely to have discussed donation with their family (r=0.5, p=0.001) and to have taken an organ donation course (p=0.025). There was no difference in age group, religion, training level, gender, ethnicity, or marital status. 10 (25%) of respondents did not know the definition of brain death and 17 (43%) believed organs could be harvested before brain death. ORGD were more likely to agree to donate a family member’s organs (r=0.4, p=0.01), and believe the system is fair (r=0.32, p=0.047). Religion affected the decision to donate a family member’s organs with no Muslim or Hindu agreeing (p=0.011). Faculty were more likely to strongly believe that organ donation should be taught in Med School (p=0.018).

Conclusion

1. The majority of MDs attending Medical Grand Rounds at a University teaching hospital had not signed an organ donor card or discussed donation with their family. 2. Organ donors were more likely to have taken a course on donation and to donate a family member’s organs. 3. 25% did not know the definition of brain death and 43% believed that it was not necessary before organ harvesting. 4. Religious beliefs did not affect signing the card but did affect willingness to donate a family member’s organs. 5. Faculty were more likely to agree that organ donation should be taught in Med School. 6. Education programs for graduate MDs should be created as misunderstanding of organ donation and personal beliefs may affect referral of patients under their care.