A social representation of organ donation. Factors influencing donation availability

Diana Todeancă, Andrei Holman, Maria Nicoleta Turliuc, Lorena Antonovici

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One can notice an increase in number of researches around the capacity to measure availability and intention to donate. Our study intends to create an instrument addressing the organizing principles of the social representation of organ donation and their influence on people’s willingness to donate (one’s own organs or the ones of a family member) along with other psycho-moral variables (moral foundations, cognitive strategies of moral disengagement, empathy). For the construction of the proposed tool, we conducted a set of 20 preliminary interviews with subjects from the general population who expressed their opinion on organ donation and other associated elements / ideas that could be factors of influence in the decision of becoming an organ donor after death. In the pilot study, 20 participants from the general population were interviewed, 14 women and 6 men, aged between 23 and 77, from urban and rural locations around Iasi and Bacau. Thereafter, within the main study, a sample of 141 students in psychology participated, aged between 19 to 38, 122 women and 19 men, students at the Faculty of Psychology and Education Sciences from Iasi, Romania took part in the study. The results are surprising if we consider the utility and danger factors, the willingness to donate the organs of a family member, or the absence of a significant influence of the factors extracted from the Interpersonal Reactivity Index, namely Emphatic Concern and Personal Distress. More research is needed to discover a possible explanation and future studies should address these issues.

organ donation, attitudes, social representation, instrument developing

DIANA TODEANCĂ – Al. I. Cuza University, Iaşi, Romania, Faculty of Psychology and Educational Sciences, E-mail: diana.todeanca@gmail.com
ANDREI HOLMAN – Al. I. Cuza University, Iaşi, Romania, Faculty of Psychology and Educational Sciences
MARIA NICOLETA TURLIUC – Al. I. Cuza University, Iaşi, Romania, Faculty of Psychology and Educational Sciences
LORENA ANTONOVICI – Al. I. Cuza University, Iaşi, Romania, Faculty of Psychology and Educational Sciences

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