During Organ Donation Week, September 20 to 26, NHS Blood and Transplant is urging people in The North West to talk to their families about organ donation as more than 7,000 people, including 200 children, are predicted to be in need of an organ transplant.
The hidden impact for these patients, which includes 676people currently on the waiting list for a transplant from The North West, is being highlighted with the release of a new song from the ‘Harmonies of Hope’ children’s choir called ‘Invisible’ which you can see here - https://youtu.be/7c40YWL9V7I
After a most challenging year for the NHS and people across the world, waiting lists for organs including kidney, heart, liver, lungs, are expected to rise and NHS Blood and Transplant is calling for more families in The North West to talk and share their organ donation decision to increase the chances of the many children, young people and adults in need of their own life-saving call.
Last year, 301 people in The North West had their lives saved by a transplant after someone died and donated their organs. If more people agreed to donate, more lives would be saved in The North West and around the country.
It is hoped the choir’s song will inspire people in The North West to talk about organ donation and for all members of the family, whatever their age, to help make sure more lives are saved.
Anthony Clarkson, Director of Organ and Tissue Donation and Transplantation, at NHS Blood and Transplant, says:
“Every day across the UK there are thousands of patients and their families, waiting for that all important life-saving call, including 676 people in The North West. Yet, this is often only possible as a result of another family receiving some of the hardest news they might ever have to hear.”
“Even though the law around organ donation has changed to an opt out system for adults in England, Scotland and Wales, it is important that people are aware that families will still always be consulted before organ donation goes ahead.”
“It is just as important as ever to make your organ donation decision known to your family and friends and leave them certain of what you what to happen in the event of your death.“
“We urge all family members of all ages in The North West to take a moment this Organ Donation Week to talk and share your decision.”
Health and Social Care Secretary Sajid Javid said: “Waiting for an organ match can be a challenging and isolating experience, and I want to applaud Harmonies of Hope for their bravery in sharing such powerful accounts of lifesaving transplants.”
“It’s vital we do all we can to ensure no child feels invisible as they wait for a match, particularly those families in underrepresented, ethnic minority communities where donation rates are not high.”
“This can change and I am urging families up and down the country to have honest and frank conversations this week about organ donations. It’s a decision that could save someone’s life.”
For more information, or to register your organ donation decision, please visit: www.organdonation.nhs.uk or call 0300 123 23 23. NHS app users can also use the service to record, check or update their organ donation decision.
Organ Donation information:
NHSBT currently estimate that up to 7,000 people are now be now in need of transplant. Official waiting list figures are currently artificially lower, due to the suspension of some patients from the waiting list due to the risks of being immuno-suppressed during the pandemic compared to the ability to continue managing their condition and not going ahead with a transplant at this time. For the most urgent transplants, liver, lung and heart, the waiting lists figures are increasing as fewer transplants are taking place, so fewer patients are moving off the list. The most urgent patients are being prioritised and we are working hard to get them the transplants they need if it is safe to do so. We predict that once active waiting lists are fully restored, that we will see numbers in the region of 7,000 people in need of transplant across the UK.
It is quick and easy to join the NHS Organ Donor Register. Call 0300 123 23 23 or visit www.organdonation.nhs.uk
Families are always involved in organ donation discussions. You can make things easier for your family by telling them you want to donate.
Every day across the UK someone dies waiting for an organ transplant
Anyone can join the NHS Organ Donor Register, age and medical conditions are not necessarily a barrier to donation.
One donor can save or transform up to nine lives through organ donation and save and transform even more by donating tissue.
There are free, curriculum-linked, online resources for secondary school teachers in England, to help educate Key Stage 3 and 4 students (11-16-year-olds) about organ, blood and stem cell donation. Visitwww.nhsbt.nhs.uk/teaching-resources to find out more.
NHS Blood and Transplant
NHS Blood and Transplant is a joint England and Wales Special Health Authority. We provide the blood donation service for England and the organ donation service for the UK. We also provide donated tissues, stem cells and cord blood. We are an essential part of the NHS, saving and improving lives through public donation.