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Donating Organs

Question:
Hello rebbi, I wanted to ask if it is permitted to donate organs.

Answer:

Donating a kidney which could be done when you are alive is permitted, and commendable as it will usually save someone’s life. Parts of other organs can be donated while alive, such as pancreas, liver and lungs.

Major organ donation after death, such as the heart, is much more problematic. The main concern is that in order to successfully donate, the heart needs to be removed at a point when the donor may be considered alive according to halacha, in which case removing the heart we be in effect killing him and hence strictly prohibited. For this reason most authorities prohibit such organ donation.

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