Keeping up with the latest technology trends can be an expensive habit. In the world of the twenty four news cycle and social media people are feeling an ever increasing drive to be connected more and more of the time. Some people are even going to lengths to hurt their physical health in order to play the technology “keeping up with the Jones'” game.
One young man went to extreme lengths to get his hands on what was in 2011 cutting edge technology – an iPad 2 and that year’s iPhone. According to a new report, the man, who did survive the surgery and is now aged 25 is currently completely disabled and requires around the clock care just to maintain his kidney function.
According to a 2011 BBC News article:
When my son came home he had a laptop computer and an Apple iPhone. I asked him where all the money for that came from. When he couldn’t keep it to himself any longer he finally told us. He said, ‘Mum, I sold my kidney.’ When he told me I felt like the sky was crashing down on our family.
To add insult to injury, the teen only received about $3,500 for his kidney, while five other people involved in the illegal operation profited by as much as $35,000.
Illegal organ trading has soared in China in recent years. Due to the country’s large population, at any given time over one million people could be waiting for an organ, but usually fewer than 10,000 people each year receive a transplanted organ. Compare this to the USA, where over 30,000 transplants are performed annually on a much smaller population.
According to a report from the original incident:
“I wanted to buy an iPad 2, but I didn’t have the money,” the boy told Shenzhen TV in the southern province of Guangdong, “When I surfed the internet I found an advert posted online by agent saying they were able to pay RMB20,000 to buy a kidney.” After negotiations, the boy travelled north to the city of Chenzhou in Hunan Province where the kidney was removed at a local hospital which discharged him after three days, paying a total of RMB22,000 for the organ.