Debate: Paying for blood and organs is not so bad

Monday, 11 October 2010, 5:30pm

The Wellcome Collection Conference Centre

183 Euston Rd, London, NW1 2BE

Allowing sales of gametes and body parts and offering incentives to increase provision have been some of the more controversial suggestions to narrow the gap between demand and supply. Drawing on Richard Titmuss’ work on blood, many have argued that financial incentives reduce supply by driving out altruistic donors as well as reducing the quality of the provided gametes and body parts and the decision-making surrounding their provision.

This debate brings together leading experts to consider, in the light of evidence and argument, whether the taboo on payment for gametes and body parts remains crucial, and how this should influence our thinking about policy.

Speaking for the motion:
Professor Martin Wilkinson
Associate Professor of Political Studies, University of Auckland

Seconder  TBC

Speaking against the motion:
Professor Heather Widdows
Professor of Global Ethics, University of Birmingham (tbc)

Professor Sheila M. Bird
Senior Scientist, MRC Biostatistics Unit, Cambridge

Professor Theresa M. Marteau
Professor of Health Psychology, King’s College London; Director of CSI Health

Tea served from 5. To be followed by refreshments.

This event is open to all and free to attend. Further information here. To book your place please email


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