Presumed Consent to Organ Donation

A new law is being proposed that would make every adult in Alberta an organ and tissue donor automatically unless they opt out. Our current system requires organ donors to opt-in.

The proposed law, the Human Tissue and Organ Donation (Presumed Consent) Amendment Act, passed first reading last week in the Alberta Legislature.

The Human Tissue and Organ Donation Act currently in effect in Alberta requires an adult to give written consent to organ use. The consent must be dated and signed by the donor and a witness (2 witnesses if the donor cannot sign for any reason). Consent can be given to use all or some body parts after death for transplantation, medical education or scientific research. We recommend you include this information in your personal directive. Read more about personal directives, powers of attorney and wills by clicking here.

Surveys suggest that over 80% of Canadians are willing to donate their organs for transplant after death, while only half carry documentation indicating whether or not they would like their organs donated.