Organ failure is one cause of death. Advancements in scientific research and technological development made organ transplantation possible and continue to find better ways to substitute failed organs with other organs of biological origin or artificial organs. Media, including newspapers, are one source of information for the public. The purpose of this study was to examine to what extent and how science and technology research and development are covered in the organ transplantation and organ donation (ODOT) coverage of n
= 300 Canadian newspapers, including the two Canadian newspapers with national reach (The Globe and Mail
, National Post
). The study generated qualitative and quantitative data addressing the following issues: (1) which scientific and technological developments are mentioned in the ODOT coverage; and (2) what issues are mentioned in the coverage of scientific and technological advancements linked to ODOT. We found little to no coverage of many technological and scientific advancements evident in academic and grey literature covering ODOT, and we found little engagement with social and ethical issues already raised about these advancements in the literature. The only area we found to be covered to a broader extent was xenotransplantation, although the coverage stopped after 2002. We argue that the newspaper coverage of ODOT under reports scientific and technological advancements related to ODOT and the issues these advancements might raise.
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