National Transplant Week

This is slightly late – National Transplant Week was 7th – 13th July but I had no internet access, and this is something I really wanted to write about!

It isn’t a pleasant subject to talk about or think about. No one wants to consider what to do with their organs should something happen to them. However, with 1000 people dying each year that could be potentially saved by an organ transplant, it is an important topic to think about, and one that needs discussion.

I’ve been an organ donor since I was 17, when I applied for my provisional driving licence. There was the option to add your name to the register, which I did without a second thought. Graham has also done the same. We also made the decision to add the kids to the donor register. No one ever wants to think about that situation becoming a reality, but in the horrible case it did, I’m sure many parents would want to potentially save the life of a desperately ill child. When Harrison and Alex are old enough to understand, and not be frightened, we will sit down and talk to them about it. If they then want to be taken off the register we will, of course, respect their decision, but hopefully, they will understand how important it is.

This year, the big focus is on ‘spelling it out’. Only 31% of families will agree to organ donation if they don’t know their loved one’s decision. When wishes have been made clear, this jumps to 90% – a massive difference!

From 1st December 2015, an ‘opt out’ programme will be introduced in Wales. This means that unless you opt out, you are automatically deemed to have given consent for donation. This is because the majority of people do want to donate organs, but only 30% actually register. If you live in England and you want to become a registered organ donor, you can do so by clicking here. It only takes a few minutes and you could potentially save many people’s lives.


16 thoughts on “National Transplant Week

  1. I think the opt-out idea here in Wales is fab… I also think if someone has signed up to the register their family shouldn’t have the right to overrule that decision

  2. I think being a registered organ donor is a great thing to do and both of my grandparents have been registered for as long as I can remember. I registered in my 20’s due to them talking to me about it. Thanks for sharing x

  3. When I had to renew my photo driving licence I opted-in then. I ticked to say they can have what they want! I’ve also made sure my family know my wishes as well. You never know when you could be in need yourself.

  4. I registered quite young and made sure I explained to love ones my choices. My Mum was against it at first but after explaining how it could save lives she went I registered too!

  5. I think everyone should have to opt out if they don’t want to do, it would make it much easier. My husband and I have talked about it – just in case.

  6. I remember hearing about the ‘opt-out’ idea before we left the UK. It makes such sense when you turn it on it’s head and assume the majority would want to help, instead of having it the other way around.
    I wonder if there are any plans to adopt it throughout the rest of the British Isles.

  7. I agree, this is an important issue to raise awareness of. I believe I am an organ donor, but I don’t think anyone apart from my husband knows that.

  8. In Ecuador, according to the new constitution and the new laws, everyone is a donor, if they don’t ask not to be. I think it’s a great thing. Because like you said, most people want to donate but very few registrate. I used to carry a card with my when I lived in Finland but here in Ecuador it was really hard thing to do. And now I can be sure that if there’s something of use in anything I leave, it will go to someone who really needs it 🙂

  9. Opting -in makes it much more complicated… it should really be a opt-out kind of thing… maybe then people wouldn’t be so ignorant to the issue as it would effect them from the gate go.

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