You are not currently logged in. Please create an account or log in to view the full course.

Ethics of Organ Transplantation

3. When Am I Dead Enough?

This is the course trailer. Please create an account or log in to view this lecture.

  • Description
  • Cite

About this Lecture


In the third mini-lecture, we discuss the definition of death in the context of organ transplantation. When doctors are looking for dead donors, they must abide by the Dead Donor Rule, however this comes with its complications. While at face value the question of whether someone is dead or alive seems an easy one, when we are looking to donate organs the question becomes more nuanced. We introduce the concepts of brain stem and circulatory death as a means of introducing this nuance that surgeons face in their professions, especially as modern medicine means that the irreversibility of circulatory death that normally governs is overcome.


In this course, Dr Greg Moorlock (University of Warwick) explores the ethics of organ transplantation. In the first module, we (i) introduce the terms of transplantation, organ failure, and the state of the art as it stands; before (ii) discussing how we obtain organs that are suitable for donation into other individuals, and potential governmental systems that can maximise the number of organs available in an ethical manner; and then (iii) introducing nuance into the definition of death, such as brain stem death and circulatory death, as well as the term irreversibility; before (iv) discussing the decisions made during organ allocation, and the outcomes that are generally considered pertinent and ‘out-of-bounds’; and then finally (v) introduce conditional donation.


Greg Moorlock is an Associate Professor, specialising in bioethics. He is Academic Lead for the Values, Law and Ethics Theme of the MBChB, and teaches extensively throughout all phases of the course. His main research interest is in the ethics of organ donation and transplantation. Greg's research to date has focussed on organ donation and transplantation, with his doctoral work looking at the ethics of conditional and directed organ donation. His first post-doctoral project explored the ethics of split liver transplantation. Following that he worked on the EU-funded SURVEILLE project, a project which explored the ethical and legal implications of surveillance.

Cite this Lecture

APA style

Moorlock, G. (2022, August 30). Ethics of Organ Transplantation - When Am I Dead Enough? [Video]. MASSOLIT.

MLA style

Moorlock, G. "Ethics of Organ Transplantation – When Am I Dead Enough?." MASSOLIT, uploaded by MASSOLIT, 30 Aug 2022,

Get instant access to over 6,200 lectures