Organ donation and transplant rates continue to recover, but thousands are still waiting
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Latest annual figures from NHS Blood and Transplant show that last year, there was a 5 per cent increase in the number of patients whose lives were saved or improved through an organ transplant in the UK.
The annual Organ and Tissue Donation and Transplantation Activity Report shows 4,532 patients received donated organs from 2,386 donors – living and deceased – in the UK last year, a 5 per cent increase on 2021/22 .
In the East Midlands, more than 300 patients – 303 – received a living or deceased transplant, compared with 243 in 2021/22.
There are currently more than 7,000 people on the active transplant waiting list in the UK, including 522 in the East Midlands.
Clinicians warn opportunities for transplant are still being missed due to families declining to support donation.
People in the East Midlands are being urged to confirm their organ donation decision on the NHS Organ Donor Register – families are more likely to support donation when they already know it was what their relative wanted. Nine out of 10 families honour their family member when the donor had confirmed their decision to donate on the tegister.
Last year, there were 161 organ donors in the East Midlands – living and deceased – compared with 170 the year before.
Anthony Clarkson, NHSBT organ donation and transplantation director, said: “More than 50,000 people are alive in the UK today thanks to the life-saving gift of organ donation, and more than300 people had a transplant in the East Midlands last year.
“But this wouldn’t be possible without the generosity of our incredible donors and their families who have given their support for donation at what is often the most difficult of times.
“We know most people support organ donation in principle and have seen a steady increase in the number of people confirming their support for organ donation via the register, including more than four million in the Midlands .
“However, we still need families to support their loved one’s decision and agree to donation when approached, which we know is most likely when they know that’s what they wanted.
“With only 1 per cent of people dying in circumstances where organ donation is possible, every donor is precious and has the potential to save up to nine lives.
“We urge everyone who supports organ donation to confirm their decision on the NHS Organ Donor Register. It is a simple action which only takes two minutes; but can ultimately save lives.”
To find out more, and confirm your support for organ donation, visit organdonation.nhs.uk, call 0300 123 2323 or use the NHS app.