We conducted a survey of attitudes towards the sale of kidneys for transplantation within and without the medical community. Half of those polled received a case of a young man in India whose only chance for survival was to purchase a kidney, the other half a case of a Canadian man who was suffering side-effects from dialysis and had been on the transplant waiting list for three years. We found the percentage of responses allowing the patients to purchase a kidney was similar for the two cases (40 per cent in the Canadian case and 49 per cent in the Indian case). The medical groups had much lower rates of approval of this practice than the public. In all groups those allowing the practice showed similar concerns about regulation. This survey indicates public opinion to be contrary to public policy.
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