ABA Journal | Law News Now
Longo, convicted of the 2001 killings of his wife and three children, wrote in the Times opinion piece: “I am seeking nothing but the right to determine what happens to my body once the state carries out its sentence.”
Longo says that he will drop his appeals if given the chance to donate. So far, the state of Oregon has declined.
But Longo’s quest to donate his organs has reignited the debate over how to handle prisoner organ transplants. Prison rights advocates and ethicists worry over consequences such as coercive donations and the fear of spreading diseases, including human immunodeficiency virus, if prisoners—especially death row inmates—are allowed to donate.
Another question percolating over the flip side of the issue is: Should inmates be allowed to receive donated organs?
“The shortages of organs are real and growing,” says Arthur L. Caplan, director of the University of Pennsylvania’s Center for Bioethics in Philadelphia. “But there are ethical considerations and practical obstacles.”
Click here to read the rest of "Life from Death Row" from the April issue of the ABA Journal.