Record organ transplants, says NHS

A record number of organ transplants were carried out in Britain in 2011/12, according to latest figures from the NHS.

NHS Blood and Transplant has announced that 3,960 transplants were carried out in the UK in 2011/12. The Organ Donation and Transplantation Activity Report 2012 shows the seventh year of growth in the number of transplants.

Sally Johnson, Director of Organ Donation and Transplantation at NHSBT, said: “Since 2007/08, our efforts have been concentrated on getting the right infrastructure in place and working with our partners in hospitals throughout the UK to change clinical practice and give more people the opportunity to donate their organs.

“Huge efforts have been made in hospitals to increase deceased organ donation and the Report for 2011/12 details the continuing, overall upward trend in organ donation and transplantation. We remain on target to meet our objective of 50 per cent growth in donation by 2013.”

The total number of people registered on the Organ Donor Register was 18,693,549 - or 30 per cent of the population - by the end of March 2012. This is an increase of nearly 950,000 people on the previous year.

Mrs Johnson said: “This report shows that things are moving in the right direction but three people on the waiting list are dying every day without receiving a transplant.

We need to carry on making people aware of the difference they can make by signing up to the Organ Donor register and discussing their wishes with their family and friends.

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The family refusal rate for organ donation in the UK is one of the highest in Europe at 45 per cent and we know a large part of that is down to people not discussing their wishes with their families.”