Monday, September 10, 2007

"procured"

Hawaiian’s have a saying that “words move mana (energy)”.

This can become obvious in many ways, but most recently when a word I used was misconstrued and generated problems because of the “value” assigned to it by someone reading the report. An individual died tragically and because of the type of gentleman he was his organs were donated to save the lives of others. When asked by the media I gave what I thought was a fairly neutral and thought-out statement in response to questions regarding his organ donation, already known to at least some of the reporters, and the fact that he was pronounced dead over 24 hours after the crash. Apparently, my choice of words was not neutral. In response to their request for an apology or retraction, I have sent the following to the paper with a request that they print it soon:

My use of the phrase “organs were procured”, recently, has caused some confusion and concern and, most unfortunately, pain. The statement was used in the online version of a Daily Herald article on September 5. This is the terminology used by agencies and others involved in organ and tissue donation when organs are obtained by donation for transplantation and recipient use. This is most readily evidenced by the name of the Association of Organ Procurement Organizations, a national organization dedicated to ethical organ and tissue donation. It may be jargon, but it is the correct terminology in these instances.

I apologize that the use of this unfamiliar term created concern and pain for the family of this individual who died tragically. The word “procured” was used without any intent to denote the illegal, and unethical, action of buying or selling organs that has happened in other areas of this country and elsewhere.

I and the Lake County Coroner’s Office strongly support organ donation and celebrate the lives that organ donation is able to save.

Again my apologies to those who may have been offended.

7 comments:

Anonymous said...

Jeez, Doc. everything you do or say is so over analyzed, you must spend a lot of time walking on eggshells....If I were you, I think I would want the media to go away and let me just do my job...I commend you for putting up with so much crap!!!

Vickie said...

thanks for clarifying the word ~! years ago we used to say "harvesting organs" so "procuring organs" is a step in the right direction. I prefer just to say "recovery of organs"

Coroners can mean the difference between life and death if they deny donation so your support is invaluable to those awaiting an organ transplant! As well, as giving a grieving family something positive to focus on.

Anonymous said...

Very well written responce. Please continue with your blogs. Jo Ann Laguna Woods, Ca

Anonymous said...

Maybe you shouldn't have to have "well though-out" responses to the media. If your up on what you're doing then things should just come naturally. Quit trying to sound above everyone - so technical. Organ donation is just that - someone DONATING the gift of life. And in response to Anonymous #1 - "Doc" - the Coroner should be highly analyzed - we was elected by the populous (barely) and now carries the responsibility of answering to all of us.

Dr. Richard Keller said...

Obviously you have an ax to grind, but I respect the comments I receive (short of those that are inflamatory, defamatory, or expletive containing), so I am posting your comment just as you sent it.

And, I will always give only "well-thought out" comments.

Anonymous said...

WOW #4...are you ever crabby!! I think you know exactly what I was saying...the media makes such a circus out of EVERYTHING..let the Dr and his office do their job, thats what we elected him/them to do...something they cant do if they have to spend their time "explaining" everything...now go put on a "happy face" like your Mom used to tell you to do.....

Anonymous said...

A wise person once said: "The perfect is the enemy of the good."