|Turia Pitt received skin donations from the US.|
Extensive organ waiting lists highlight the need for more donors, but research shows the reasons Australians decline "cosmetic" donations are often spiritual or superstitious.
While 90 percent of Australians agree with the idea of organ donation, 48 percent will turn down the request to donate their deceased relative’s organs, according to recent data from the Organ Donor Registry.
"The quote that keeps coming up in my research is 'the eyes are the windows to the soul'," Holly Northam, a researcher at the University of Canberra, said.
"You might sit with a family and if the children are involved they will normally say yes to everything to help another person — except the eyes and heart. Because we attach more emotion to those parts."