7 September 2020
During Organ Donation Week, September 7 to 13, NHS Blood and Transplant (NHSBT) and The Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital NHS Trust (SaTH) are urging people to talk to their families about organ donation to increase the number of people whose lives can be saved or transformed by an organ transplant.
From 20 May this year, the law around organ donation has now changed in England. All adults are now considered as having agreed to donate their own organs when they die, unless they record a decision not to donate, are in one of the excluded groups or have told their family that they don’t want to donate.
This week, doctors and specialist nurses at SaTH, are urging families across the district to talk about their organ donation decision and make sure their loved ones are aware as families will continue to be approached before organ donation goes ahead.
SaTH is supporting the campaign by sharing information all week, both through social media and internally with colleagues at the Trust.
Fiona Deakin, Specialist Nurse, Organ Donation, said: “Knowing what your relative wanted helps families support their decision around organ donation at what is often a difficult time. We desperately need more people in Shropshire, Telford & Wrekin and mid Wales to talk about organ donation to increase the number of lifesaving transplants.
“These conversations are especially important for local residents from Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) backgrounds. People from these communities are more likely to need a transplant, however, often wait longer as the best match will often come from someone of the same ethnicity.”
SaTH is asking people across the area to tell their families that they want to donate after their death to ensure more lives are saved.
Fiona said: “We need more people to talk about organ donation to increase the number of lifesaving transplants.
“While most people agree that it is important to talk to their family about organ donation, it is less likely that they will have actually had this important conversation.
“Sadly, many opportunities are lost every year because families don’t know if their loved one wanted to be a donor or not. Please don’t wait. Speak to your family about organ donation today.”
Anthony Clarkson, Director of Organ Donation and Transplantation for NHS Blood and Transplant said: “We are very grateful to SaTH for its support during Organ Donation Week.
“Even now the law has changed, families will continue to be approached before organ donation goes ahead. It remains so important to talk to your families and ensure they know what you would want to happen.
“Register your organ donation decision on the NHS Organ Donor Register and tell your family the choice you have made. If the time comes, we know families find the organ donation conversation with nurses or medical teams much easier if they already know what their relative wanted.”
Find out more and register your decision by visiting NHS Organ Donor Register at www.organdonation.nhs.uk and share your decision with your family.