NHS calls North Yorkshire families to discuss organ donation

NHS Blood and Transplant is calling on families in North Yorkshire to talk about organ donation with more waiting lists for transplants than available donors.

Current statistics show 129 patients in North Yorkshire are waiting for an organ transplant, while only 52 people in the region have found a donor to receive a transplant.

However, the NHS Blood and Transplant (NHSBT) found that only 37% of family members are sure whether or not to donate their family’s organ.

Therefore, NHSBT encourages families to have conversations about organ donation over the Christmas period when they get together.

Anthony Clarkson, Director of Organ and Tissue Donation and Transplantation at NHSBT, said: “We know that for thousands of people across the UK, including 129 in North Yorkshire, the greatest gift that they might receive this year will be a phone call telling them that a donor has been found for them – please take a moment this Christmas to let your family know and be sure of your organ donation decision.

“These conversations could help save the lives of people who are currently spending their Christmas waiting for a transplant, the only reason they can enjoy a happy and healthy Christmas is because of the generosity of a donor and his or her. family who have chosen to give so selflessly. the gift of life. ”

Only 42% of the UK have recorded their decision on the NHS Organ Donor Registry, although despite this, many are still unaware that their families will still be consulted prior to organ donation.

Every day in the UK, a person in need of an organ transplant dies.

Vicky Petterson, from Redcar in North Yorkshire, had a lung transplant 22 years ago – she is now 50, saw her son Antony grow up, became a grandmother last month and celebrated her 31st birthday of marriage in 2021

She said: “I think of my donor on birthdays, special occasions and when I feel thoughtful I am aware of his family, I know they have spent 22 years without this person and I am always grateful. that they made this decision at the most difficult time of their lives.

“When I had my transplant, I was hoping that for five years I wouldn’t live past my teenage years – I had a lifetime because of my transplant and it was thanks to my donor.

“I saw Antony grow up, I was at his graduation, I saw him start to work as a music teacher, I never thought that it was possible for me to become a grandparent – it’s wonderful to watch and hold Rory, never have I even dreamed of it when I was on the waiting list. ”

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