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Emergency staff attitudes toward organ donation after cardiac death

Mateos Rodríguez AA, Sánchez Brunete Ingelmo V, Navalpotro Pascual JM, Barba Alonso C, Martín Maldonado ME

Servicio de Urgencias Médicas de Madrid. SUMMA112. Madrid, Spain.

Objetives: Organ donation after cardiac death is an effective alternative to donation after
brain death. Studies have shown that health care staff have considerable influence
on family attitudes toward donation. Researchers have also explored the attitudes of
staff members. We aimed to determine emergency staff attitudes to donation after cardiac
Methods: A survey questionnaire concerning attitudes toward organ and tissue donation
sought the opinions of physicians, nurses, and ambulance staff of the advanced life
support teams of the SUMMA112 emergency service of Madrid, Spain. We analyzed
the results to detect differences among groups of respondents.
Results: A total of 180 responses (61.7% from men) were received; 54.4% of the respondents
report that they apply the protocol after 20 minutes of cardiopulmonary resuscitation.
Informing the family of the death is very important according to 57.2%,
but 59.4% declared that they felt lack of preparation. Ninety-nine percent approved of
organ donation, and 87.2% would like to be organ donors. Courses on how to communicate
unwelcome news are needed according to 97.8%. No gross differences were
found among profesional categories.
Conclusions: The SUMA 112 emergency care professionals are similarly and well disposed
to give information in this seetting, but they feel a need for specific training.

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