Kidney trade comes at a high price

Tom Reilly; 3/3/10

For Saide Haddad the choice between a chance at a normal life and one shackled to a dialysis machine was simple. ”Nobody knows what it is like to be so sick … If you have an opportunity that gives you a 10 per cent chance of success you have to take it. Even a 5 per cent chance, you would try.” For Mrs Haddad, a mother of three from Ryde, that chance involved flying to Baghdad in 2002 to buy a kidney from an impoverished Palestinian. Although there are no official figures on the number of Australians who buy an organ overseas – a practice known as transplant tourism – statistics compiled by Mrs Haddad’s specialist, Yvonne Shen, show at least 118 have travelled to purchase a kidney.