Economics- The kidney organ market

Hundreds of people worldwide die daily while waiting on an organ transplant list. In many cases there are people willing to help them buy giving up their own organs, for a price. However, in most countries governments have intervened in an effort to deal with concerns of fairness. The kidney organ market in the US is one such of these examples. In the United States such sales are illegal under the National Organ Transplant Act of 1984, but while well intended the ban on organ sales does come at a cost.

This is a multipart assignment in which you will examine and evaluate the organ market, outlining the merits and weaknesses of regulations as well as suggest an alternative, from an economic point of view. As you progress through the course you will incorporate more and more economic language into your analysis, in the end forming a complete economic discussion.

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Part I – (this draws on opportunity cost (Ch 1) and markets (Ch 3))

Describe the market for kidney organs, as it would be in a free market without government intervention, using what you have learned about scarcity, marginal analysis in decision-making, and markets. You must include a discussion of resources, supply and demand, as well as marginal benefits and marginal costs. Think of this as an explanation of the pros and cons of the market using economic terminology.

Describe the benefits and costs but leave the discussion of organ rationing and other solutions to the problems in this market for the next part. Describe this market using supply and demand; reference your graph in your description. Include “graph 1” of this market at the end of the paper (not included in page count). This should be a discussion without mentioning Price Controls, only discuss how the kidney organ market would be without government intervention. Feel free to use any stats or data that you find through your own research – make sure you use econ terminology.

Part II – (this draws on government (Ch 4) to improve the discussion made in Part I)

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