- Top of page
- Work Group 1: Determining Death by a Cardiopulmonary Criterion
- Work Group 2: Assessing Medical Criteria to Predict DCD Candidacy Following the Withdrawal of Life Support
- Work Group 3: Protocols of DCD Organ Recovery and Successful Transplantation
- Work Group 4: Initiating and Increasing DCD in Donation Service Areas
- Work Group 5: Allocation of DCD Organs for Transplantation
- Work Group 6: The Media, Public Perceptions and DCD
- Organization and Agency Representation
A national conference on organ donation after cardiac death (DCD) was convened to expand the practice of DCD in the continuum of quality end-of-life care.
This national conference affirmed the ethical propriety of DCD as not violating the dead donor rule. Further, by new developments not previously reported, the conference resolved controversy regarding the period of circulatory cessation that determines death and allows administration of pre-recovery pharmacologic agents, it established conditions of DCD eligibility, it presented current data regarding the successful transplantation of organs from DCD, it proposed a new framework of data reporting regarding ischemic events, it made specific recommendations to agencies and organizations to remove barriers to DCD, it brought guidance regarding organ allocation and the process of informed consent and it set an action plan to address media issues.
When a consensual decision is made to withdraw life support by the attending physician and patient or by the attending physician and a family member or surrogate (particularly in an intensive care unit), a routine opportunity for DCD should be available to honor the deceased donor's wishes in every donor service area (DSA) of the United States.