Op-Ed: A coroner's court has ruled that a surgeon who gave two transplant patients infected kidneys cannot be criticised.
Two patients, Robert 'Jim' Stuart, 67, and Darren Holmes, 42, received kidneys which were infected with meningitis causing parasitic worms at the Cardiff University hospital. Both men died following the transplant surgery.
The families of the men said after the coroner's verdict that they will launch civil legal action.
Transplant surgery has come a long way since its early days, when many patients died and transplanted organs were often rejected.
But there are never enough suitable organs for patients needing a transplant.
From December 2015 Wales will change its donor system from opt in to opt out. This means that unless a person has opted out of the donor scheme he or she will be fair game.
Currently potential donors make their after-life transplant wishes known in life. Does a system where people actively volunteer in receive better quality donors? If so how come Mt Stuart and Mr Holmes received infected kidneys?
If you face imminent certain death, or your quality of life has been reduced to nothing, you may not care immediately about the state of the new organ or organs.
However it's doubtful you would be smiling if you knew your new kidney was infected with meningitis causing parasitic worms, even if transplant surgery was in theory a life saver for you.
The most pertinent question has to be, should patients be informed of the quality of transplant organs enabling them to make an informed choice?
All too often organs for transplant are taken from deceased patients who may be too elderly or have had health issues such as alcohol or drug abuse.
There are rules or guidelines but a surgeon may choose an organ which breaks the rules if it is the only one available at the time.
A donor who died in an accident may have relatively healthy kidneys whereas those from an alcoholic could have a range of problems.
The case is a reminder of the vital work transplant teams do and how we can all help.
Carry a donor card and make your wishes known to your loved ones.