How rational is the decision to become an organ donor?

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Researchers are already aware that decision making about health issues is not necessarily driven by rational or cognitive-based decision-making processes. This appears to be especially true for the decision to donate organs. Although hints about what is actually driving the decision-making process are scattered throughout the literature, noncognitive factors have not been tested systematically. Structural equation modeling of data gathered from 4426 participants at six different geographic locations in the United States demonstrates that cognitive-based factors (such as knowledge about donation) are less influential on the decision to donate than noncognitive variables such as the desire to maintain bodily integrity, worries that signing a donor card might `jinx’ a person, and medical mistrust.

Source: “Facts versus `Feelings’ How Rational Is the Decision to Become an Organ Donor?” from Journal of Health Psychology

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