On the 7th April, we celebrate the World Health Day, which also reminds ourselves on the importance of a good state of health to enjoy a fulfilled life. The achievements during the last decades of exceeding developments regard to what is possible nowadays in science, medicine and health care opens up new doors to a long living life compared to the past. One example is the transplantation of organs. Unfortunately, some people suffer from serious diseases or they lose an organ in an accident and the only solution to survive is transplantation. Perceiving the subject of organ donation is not easy as it also means to deal with topics like our death. However, in a case where you cannot state your opinion any more about what is going to happen with your organs your immediate family has to take the responsibility for a decision to either consent to a transplantation or not. Here arises the idea behind an organ donor card. Whereas in some countries the law implies a presumed consent if not stated any different individually, in others it happens to be vice versa (informed consent). This means by owning such a donor card it assists the clarification of your organs claim after your death.
What does Europe do for me regarding organ donation? The EU is taking the concerns about organ donation and transplantation serious; since 2010 you can lean on the EU quality and safety standards as a member of the European Union and a specific action plan provides the opportunity to a pan-European cooperation and even collaborations beyond that for an outreached interaction and exchange. The waiting lists of people who are in need of an organ in order to continue with their life are long. Awareness and knowledge about this subject and each countries` legislation are crucial to being able to decide on one`s preferences.
One interesting project of the Terminology Coordination Unit of the European Parliament regarding the terminology of organ donation happened in collaboration with the University of Heidelberg.
Written by Xenia Sauer – Study Visitor in Communication at the Terminology Coordination Unit of the European Parliament (Luxembourg) and student in the Master program in Learning and Communication in Multilingual and Multicultural Contexts at the University of Luxembourg. She holds a Bachelor degree in Sustainable Tourism and speaks German, English, Spanish and French.