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6,000 to donate organs in Shenzhen

[ 2009-05-08 10:56]     字号 [] [] []  
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More than 6,000 people have registered to donate organs in Shenzhen.

The overwhelming support is contrary to a traditionally held belief among many Chinese that the body should remain untouched after death.

The residents registered with the Red Cross Society of China after the closure of the city's organ donation center in 2004.

But a new donation center will open today following a deal between the Red Cross and Shenzhen University.

"We have had to turn down all corpse donations since 2005," said Zhao Lizhen, vice-chairman of Red Cross Society of China Shenzhen Branch.

"But more than 6,000 residents have registered for organ donation and two thirds are willing to donate their organs and corpses."

"Residents in this migrant city are very open and supportive to the donation."

"They are less afraid than other Chinese cities of challenging the traditional concept of keeping the body untouched after death."

The Red Cross will be responsible for registration, liaison and publicity. The medical school of Shenzhen University will be in charge of accepting and managing the remains.

The center has already accepted six corpses.

Some of the donors suffered unusual diseases and wanted scientists to be able to find new solutions.

Shenzhen is one of the leading Chinese cities in organ donation, especially of corneas. Zhao said media coverage helped improve awareness.

Nearly 300 people have provided their corneas and 32 people volunteered to provide more than one organ.

However, the corpses will only be of benefit to researchers in Shenzen because there is a law banning intra-city transportation of remains.

"There are so many medical schools and institutes in Guangzhou (a two-hour drive from Shenzhen) and they are in great need of remains. But it's very difficult to get permission to transport the remains," Zhao said.

Amber Lee, a legal website worker, said people who intend to donate their remains had big hearts.

"For me, it's accepted that I would donate my organs after death, but it's unacceptable to use my body for medical researches or making samples," she said.

(英语点津 Helen 编辑)

6,000 to donate organs in Shenzhen

About the broadcaster:

6,000 to donate organs in Shenzhen

Nancy Matos is a foreign expert at China Daily Website. Born and raised in Vancouver, Canada, Nancy is a graduate of the Broadcast Journalism and Media program at the British Columbia Institute of Technology. Her journalism career in broadcast and print has taken her around the world from New York to Portugal and now Beijing. Nancy is happy to make the move to China and join the China Daily team.