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Fact sheet on the opt-out solution

Current situation

In the context of organ donation, the requirements for the removal of organs, tissues and cells are governed by a variety of regulations. In European countries, a distinction is made between two models for expressing intent. These are the consent solution and the opt-out solution, both of which are applied in restricted and extended forms.In Switzerland, the extended consent solution has applied since the Swiss Transplantation Act came into force in 2007. Previously, transplantation medicine was regulated at the cantonal level, with the cantons recognizing both models for expressing intent. There is currently discussion in Switzerland about whether the system should be changed to an extended opt-out solution. The popular initiative “Promote organ donation – save lives” was filed in 2019, with the aim of implementing the opt-out solution in Switzerland. The Federal Council opposed the initiative with an indirect counter-proposal. The aim of the latter is also to see the opt-out solution introduced, but in an extended form with the inclusion of relatives.