The M.E.'s office is helping a hospital with their organ donation program. Quincy goes there to help declare a young man dead and he was told that his kidney would go to a man whose ... See full summary »



(teleplay), (teleplay) | 6 more credits »


Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Garry Walberg ...
John S. Ragin ...
Joseph Roman ...
Raymond Morrison
Dr. Williams
Peter Hobbs ...
Dr. Peterson
Kenneth O'Brien ...
Andrew Corey
Logan Ramsey ...
Martin Bloch
Edward Grover ...
Dr. Richard Monroe (as Ed Grover)
Terence Morgan
Joan Corey
Jeanne Bates ...
Mrs. Murphy
Judson Pratt ...
Mr. Murphy


The M.E.'s office is helping a hospital with their organ donation program. Quincy goes there to help declare a young man dead and he was told that his kidney would go to a man whose constantly having dialysis. Quincy and the doctor talk to the boy's parents and convince them to donate his organs for transplant. Later a lawyer upon learning of this sues the hospital for coercing the parents for gain. Quincy's in awe cause the man he was told who would receive the organ is not a man of means. He learns that the hospital director overruled the doctor and had the organ given to a wealthy man. Now the whole program is in jeopardy unless Quincy can prove to the parents that their son was brain dead at the time. Written by

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Drama | Mystery | Crime




Release Date:

4 January 1979 (USA)  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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User Reviews

Tedious episode featuring important issue
15 September 2015 | by See all my reviews

A Question of Death begins with a young motorcycle accident victim being taken to the hospital and declared brain dead. The victim is registered as an organ donor and Quincy (Jack Klugman) is called in to assist and consult on the case. After the doctors convince the parents of the victim to pull the plug, they are approached by a lawyer who convinces them that this was premature and a huge lawsuit is filed against the medical team. Quincy becomes further enraged with the hospital administration when he learns that the kidney of the man who died went to a wealthy patient rather than a low income one who was in more serious need.

While this episode addresses some important topics such as the importance of organ donation, the legalities surrounding patients declared brain dead and the ambulance chasing medical malpractice litigation culture, I just could not get interested in it and found it to be a very tedious story. Most of the scenes that take place in the hospital and courtroom just seemed dull and dragged out. I think this plot would have worked much better in a drama set in a hospital, such as the The Bold Ones: The New Doctors series starring David Hartman. Playing out on Quincy, something just doesn't feel right when he is spending more time in a hospital among the living rather than the coroner lab.

Unless you have a keen interest in the medical and legal issues featured here, I wouldn't characterize this as a particularly good or standout episode of Season 4 as there is no murder investigation or even a mystery really.

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