Do your loved ones know?

What follows is a poem relecting on the ‘to opt-in or to opt-out’ organ donation debate.  It is inspired by this Australian news article.

This is me, trying to decide….because opt-in or opt-out, a decision must be made.

Opt-out systems do not sit well with me, because to actively opt-out judges you an a#$😱hole, even though your choice is clear, and you get a free pass if you remain passive…but ultimately when decision time comes, your active choice is unclear.  This leaves the choice with stressed, grieving,  loved ones.

Opt-in means absolutely you agree.  Consent is informed, you’ve taken the time to document and communicate your decision.   Not opting in is like a passive stance in an opt-out system, stressed, grieving loved ones must make the choice.

This is not about saying yes…or whether we should switch to opt out.  This is about making decisions.  And the trouble with informed consent,  is it is built on a premise of yes.  And decisions may depend on circumstances. ..they may change over time.



It is rare, but could be you, at the end of your life,

And all it takes is a conversation to avoid creating strife,

Think on it now, and come to an informed decision affective,

Record it in your death care plan – your Advance Care Directive.

The choice is yours, but if you don’t,  others must decide,

At a time of great stress, as you will have died.


But to be bullied into a yes; coerced, pressured or guilted 

Means the conversation was not respectful, but was rather stilted.

Those advocating opt-out, assume only one conclusion

And suggest that their emotional stories will clear up all confusion.

But opt-inners say, opt-in means an absolute decision,

And opt-out would lead to more devision.


If you don’t say yes, if you don’t agree, you are the lowest of the low,

At least that is the way the conversation seems to go.

They often ask, what if…what if it was you?

You’d hope that all possible organs were available on cue.

But what if. ..what if…you’d rather die?

Allowing nature to run its course,  not dwelling on the why.

Again be clear, you won’t recieve,  but maybe you will give,

So that others may have the choice to continue to live?


It is so much more than just a yes, or an outright no.

And opt-in systems are the more respectful way to go.

Take time to consider how you feel: is it none, some or all?

Will you give, will you recieve; and who will make the call?



If your organs are to have a second life or if with you they go,

The most important thing to do – is let your loved ones know. 

And if donation is your choice,  register it here,

That way, if circumstances rise, your choice is clear.


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