The China Post | June 10, 2015
By Sun Hsin-hsuan
Patients receiving illegal organ transplants overseas will be facing a maximum of five years in prison and a NT$300,000 fine if amendments to the Human Organ Transplantation Act pass the Legislative Yuan, which is likely to happen, according to legislators.
According to Po-chang Lee (李伯璋), chairman of Taiwan Organ Registry and Sharing Center (TWRSC, 器官捐贈移植登錄中心), Taiwanese patients still participate in organ trading in mainland China, which permits organ trafficking. Lawmakers aim to curb this brutal act by making it a crime at home.
In May, amendments to the Human Organ Transplantation Act were proposed, introducing new aspects to the act. Firstly, those undertaking organ trades and transplants arranged overseas will face criminal punishment when patients return to the nation.
Secondly, regulations will make it illegal for organs from criminals sentenced to death to be used in patients.
According to Chen, the controversial issue lies within the diagnosis of brain death. Criminal law allows forensic scientists only 20 minutes in the execution chamber to determine brain death, Chen said.
Under such circumstances, criminals may be certified as brain dead prematurely and medical teams may consequently be removing organs from a living person. "Such cases have really happened," Chen said, adding that it is will be against the law to remove organs from an executed criminal. Moreover, many professional medical teams have refused to conduct such operations.
The third amendment is to mandate officials to enquire whether a person is willing to donate organs after death when reissuing driver's licenses, ID cards, or National Health Insurance cards...