People in Eastbourne are being urged to make their feelings about organ donation known to their loved ones on National Transplant Week.
The aim of this year’s campaign is to increase awareness that the decision to donate a loved one’s organs after they die falls to the family, should the circumstances around the death allow donation to be suitable.
National Transplant Week runs from July 7-13 and NHS Blood and Transplant has labelled this the perfect time to discuss organ donation with your family to save them from the burden of having to guess your decision at what would already be a difficult time.
Sally Johnson, Director of Organ Donation and Transplantation for NHS Blood and Transplant said, “Last year, 35 people living in East Sussex benefited from a life-saving organ transplant thanks to families making the decision to donate when a loved one died, a decision that we know makes them incredibly proud.
“We know that families are much less likely to allow organ donation to go ahead if they don’t know it’s what their loved one wanted.
“To help more people we need everyone, even if you’re one of the 289,961 people on the NHS Organ Donor Register in East Sussex, to tell those closest to you that you want to donate your organs. Please have the conversation and spell it out.”
In East Sussex, 36 residents died due to the shortage of organs in the last five years and there are currently 104 people in the county waiting for a transplant. On average, three people a day die in need of an organ transplant in the UK because there aren’t enough organs available.
More lives would be saved if more families agree to donate their loved one’s organs after death. Sadly, four out of ten families don’t give permission to donate when approached.
For further information or to register your organ donation decision go to www.transplantweek.co.uk. Follow the NHS Blood and Transplant group on Twitter @NHSOrganDonor.