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Smoke and mirrors: unanswered questions and misleading statements obscure the truth about organ sources in China
  1. Wendy A Rogers1,
  2. Torsten Trey2,
  3. Maria Fiatarone Singh3,
  4. Madeleine Bridgett4,
  5. Katrina A Bramstedt5,
  6. Jacob Lavee6
  1. 1Department of Philosophy and Department of Clinical Medicine, Macquarie University, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
  2. 2Doctors Against Forced Organ Harvesting, Washington DC, USA
  3. 3Faculty of Health Sciences and School of Medicine, University of Sydney, Sydney, Australia
  4. 4Sydney, Australia
  5. 5School of Medicine, Bond University, Gold Coast, Queensland, Australia
  6. 6Sackler Faculty of Medicine, Tel Aviv University, Ramat Aviv, Israel
  1. Correspondence to Professor Wendy A Rogers, Department of Philosophy and Medicine, Macquarie University, Sydney, NSW 2109, Australia;{at}


This response refutes the claim made in a recent article that organs for transplantation in China will no longer be sourced from executed prisoners. We identify ongoing ethical problems due to the lack of transparent data on current numbers of transplants in China; implausible and conflicting claims about voluntary donations; and obfuscation about who counts as a voluntary donor. The big unanswered question in Chinese transplant ethics is the source of organs, and until there is an open and independently audited system in China, legitimate concerns remain about organ harvesting from prisoners of conscience.

  • Transplantation
  • Coercion
  • Donation/Procurement of Organs/Tissues
  • Killing

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