As the leading centre for altruistic organ donations in the country, Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust (PHT) is supporting Organ Donation Week (3rd-9th September) by urging staff, patients and the public to join the organ donor register – and, most importantly, to tell family and friends about that decision.
To highlight the start of Organ Donation Week on the 3rd September, the Emirates Spinnaker Tower in Gunwharf Quays will be lit up in pink. Come and visit our stand from 1pm-5pm outside the Main Entrance to the Spinnaker Tower to find out more about organ donation and hear stories from transplant patients who are alive today because of it. Organ donation specialists will also be there to encourage the public to join the register.
Last year many families did not agree to organ donation because they did not know what their loved one wanted. This organ donation week we are reminding people that a few words can make an extraordinary difference. Right now there are 6,400 people waiting for an organ transplant and three people on average die every day across the UK because not enough organs are being donated.
In Hampshire alone in 2017/18 there were 135 organ transplant operations completed. In fact, the Wessex area (Dorset, Hampshire and the Isle of Wight) has had the highest number of altruistic kidney donors (per head of population) in the country – 55 donors between 2007 and 2017.* Altruistic Donation is where living people donate whole or partial organs.
Although more than half a million people die each year across the UK, only around one in 100 die in circumstances where their organs can be donated and there are still 209 people in Hampshire right now waiting for organ transplants. So we need to ensure that every signed-up potential donor can achieve their wish by telling their family.
The aim of the Organ Donation Week campaign is to ensure donors can fulfil their wishes by encouraging them to talk their decision through with their nearest and dearest.
Richard Clinton, Critical Care Consultant at Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust, said: “It is vital for people to discuss with their families their views on Organ Donation. If you die in circumstances where you could become a donor, specialist teams would ask your family to support your decision to donate.
“Understandably less than half of families agree to organ donation if they aren’t aware of their relative’s decision to be a donor. But approximately 90% of families do give their consent when they are aware. During an emotional and difficult time, knowing about your decision makes it much easier for them to support your wishes.
“I and my colleagues at the trust are also very keen to recognise that our communities already really embrace and understand the importance of organ donation. This is reflected in the many families that have made the ultimate commitment to donate and the very high number of altruistic kidney donors in the Wessex area. We thank you for helping us to continue this vital work that would not be possible without your commitment to organ donation”
You can find out more about organ donation and can sign up to the register via the following website. www.organdonation.nhs.uk or you can call 0300 123 23 23. If you’ve already registered, please share your decision with your friends, using the hashtag #YesIDonate.