AMA welcomes living organ donor paid-leave scheme
AMA Vice President, Professor Geoffrey Dobb, said today that the Government’s new paid-leave scheme will provide welcome support for living organ donors and will hopefully contribute to an increase in Australia’s organ donation rate.
The Government has announced that living organ donors will be paid the equivalent of the minimum wage up to $606 per week for six weeks to help them cover costs when recovering from surgery.
“Donating an organ is one of the bravest and most generous acts that any living donor could possibly do, and they deserve financial support as they recover from saving or enhancing another person’s life,” Professor Dobb said.
“While the minimum wage sum may be modest, it will help take away some of the worry for people when they are making the courageous decision to donate an organ, usually to a family member or friend.
“The AMA and other groups have been calling for this support for some time, and we congratulate the Government on introducing the scheme.”
Professor Dobb said that Australia’s overall organ donation rate is increasing, but we should be doing much better.
“There is more information available now to help people to make the decision to become an organ donor, including information for family members to honour the wishes of organ donors upon their death.
“The paid-leave scheme should provide a boost for living organ donors, but we must continue with our efforts to get more people to sign up to the Australian Organ Donation Register.”
People can register their decision to become an organ and tissue donor at any Medicare branch, or at the Australian Organ Register website to register online, or by calling Medicare Australia on 1800 777 203.
7 April 2013
CONTACT: John Flannery 02 6270 5477 / 0419 494 761
Kirsty Waterford 02 6270 5464 / 0427 209 753