Views on deceased organ donation in the Netherlands: A q-methodology study
In many countries, such as the US, Germany, France, and the Netherlands, governments are dealing with a great shortage of organ donors. Even though people generally show positive attitudes towards organ donation, they often do not actually register as organ donors themselves. This study’s objective was to explore prevailing viewpoints among the Dutch population on deceased organ donation and the relation between aspects of the viewpoints potentially influencing the decision to register as an organ donor. Although substantive research about attitudes on organ donation has been conducted, this is the first study investigating people’s viewpoints focusing on the relation between beliefs, tastes, preferences, motives, goals and other constituents underlying people’s viewpoints on organ donation, such as the role of the media and public policies. This Q-methodology study revealed four viewpoints: “not donating your organs is a waste”, “it does not go with my religion”, “my family should decide”; and “it’s a good deed, but I’m doubtful”. These viewpoints convey information on potential reasons for the gap between people’s favourable attitudes towards organ donation and the low number of actual registrations, and opportunities for policy makers to address certain target groups more adequately.