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Organ donor families and non-donor families attitudes, feelings, beliefs and social-economic profile

Grant number: 05/02579-0
Support Opportunities:Regular Research Grants
Duration: July 01, 2006 - August 31, 2008
Field of knowledge:Health Sciences - Medicine
Principal Investigator:Fernando Bacal
Grantee:Fernando Bacal
Host Institution: Faculdade de Medicina (FM). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). São Paulo , SP, Brazil


The shortage of organs for transplantation is a problem all over the world. In Brazil, only 1/5 of potential donors admitted to intensive care units become effective donors. The structural problems of public health system is a major limiting factor for organ transplantation in developing countries as Brazil. Another world challenge is the search for the most suitable approach of potential donor families. The refusal of families is the main problem for organ transplantation process. Therefore, psychological studies are necessary to understand the beliefs, feelings, attitudes and social-economic profile of organ donor families and non – donor families. The comprehension of these factors is essential to improve the dynamics of these families` decision process. The main goals of this project are: (1) to identify the social-economic profile of families, (2) to determine the cognitive aspects that influence the decision process and (3) to describe the attitudes of families in face of the decision to donate or not. This knowledge is important to define among families` beliefs, attitudes, feelings and social – economic profile, predictive factors of their behavior and decision when requested for organ donation of their relatives. Understanding the donation and transplantation processes from the perspective of potential donor families is an essential step to minimize their suffering, improve organ availability , and to reduce the anguish of those who expect for an organ. The families' profile will be analyzed through a questionnaire and a pre- structured interview, applied to 100 families previously approached by The Organization for Organs Search of the Clinics Hospital of Sao Paulo University Medical School. The instruments of the research (questionnaire and interview) will be individually applied, and the interview will be recorded after family's consent for that. A preliminary test of the methodology will be carried on with five families, and some modification in the instruments may be necessary after this pilot study. The collected data will be submitted to quantitative and qualitative analysis. The objective nature of the instruments as well as the score systems previously developed make possible a suitable statistical analysis of information. A logistic regression evaluation will access the importance of the different variables in the families' decision process to donate or not. The collected data will be useful for the development of a psychological instrument that could be used by the Organization for Organs Search in many hospitals. The previous knowledge of family's beliefs and feelings will improve the approach, which will be more individualized, humanized and more effective. (AU)

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