'Deadly' shortage of organ donors across the region is costing lives - The Coventry Observer

11th Aug, 2022

'Deadly' shortage of organ donors across the region is costing lives

Sarah Mason 9th Sep, 2017

A ‘DEADLY shortage’ of organ donors is costing lives across the region.

New data from NHS Blood and Transplant shows 302 people in the West Midlands, including 29 in Coventry, died over the past ten years while waiting for an organ.

And there are currently 27 people in Coventry waiting for a transplant.

The tragic figures were revealed to mark Organ Donation Week (September 4-10) – and to urge people to tell their families they want to become donors.

Hundreds of life-saving transplants have been missed every year because families did not know what their relative wanted, so they decided it was safer to say ‘no’.

Anthony Clarkson, assistant director of organ donation and transplantation for NHS Blood and Transplant, said: “It’s a tragedy that people are dying unnecessarily every year in the West Midlands waiting for transplants.

“We know that if everyone who supported donation talked about it and agreed to donate, most of those lives would be saved.

“This Organ Donation Week, tell your family you want to save lives. A few words now can make an extraordinary difference. It will also make things much easier for your family to make the right decision.

“In Warwickshire there are more than 217,000 people on the NHS Organ Donor Register. However if you want to be a donor, your family’s support is still needed for donation to go ahead.

“If you are unsure about donation, please ask yourselves as a family what you would do if one of you needed a transplant. If you would take an organ, shouldn’t you be prepared to donate?”

NHS Blood and Transplant surveys show over 80 per cent of people support organ donation but only around 49 per cent have ever talked about it.

Families who agree to donate say it helps with their grief and that they feel proud to know their relative gave others the chance of a new beginning.

Visit www.nhsbt.nhs.uk/get-involved/promoting-donation-hub/download-digital-materials/organ-donation-week for more information.

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