Every year thousands of lives are saved or transformed through the gift of a transplant but there remains a critical shortage of donor organs. Currently there are almost 7,000 people on the UK national transplant waiting list, but sadly three people die every day whilst waiting as there are not enough organs available. Despite more than 500,000 people dying each year in the UK, fewer than 5,000 people die in circumstances where they can become a donor.
After reviewing the process of organ donation the Government published a report in January 2008 with recommendations to address the issue of the shortage of donor organs. Here at Mid Yorks we are implementing some of those recommendations on a local level to try and improve donation rates and help those people waiting for a transplant.
Organ Donation Committee
We have established an Organ Donation Committee to raise awareness of organ donation and help increase family consent rates for donation. The Committee is chaired by Trust Chairman Jules Preston and consists of:
- Dr Helen Buglass, Clinical lead for Organ Donation
- Rachel Wiseman, Specialist Nurse for Organ Donation
- Staff from the areas where donation and transplants occur.
We recognise and accept that organ donation may not be the wish of every family but we are committed to ensure that conversations about organ donation are a routine part of end of life care for all families of patients where organ donation is possible.
Which organs can be donated?
Organs which can be donated after death include the heart, lungs, kidneys, liver, pancreas and small bowel. Tissue such as skin, bone, heart valves and corneas can also be used to help others. One donor can give life to several people and restore the sight of two more.
There is a critical shortage of organs and the gap between the number of organs donated and the number of people waiting for a transplant is increasing.
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Think – “Would you take an organ if you needed one?”