We’re being asked to sign up to the NHS Organ Donor Register in Eastbourne.
Thre are currently 75 people in East Sussex on the transplant waiting list, but due to a shortage of donors, many people will die before they find the match they need to save their lives. In the last five years 30 people in East Sussex have died waiting for a transplant.
While most people (81%) say they support organ donation, only around a third of people in the UK (23.3 million) have joined the NHS Organ Donor Register. Too many people admit they just “haven’t got round” to joining yet
In East Sussex 356,179 people have registered their decision to be an organ donor.
Sally Johnson, NHS Blood and Transplant Director of Organ Donation and Transplantation said, “It’s a terrible shame that so many people who want to save lives through organ donation have not taken the next, simple step to register that decision. We all have busy lives, yet most of us would admit that we still find ourselves whiling time away and delaying doing important things. Signing up to the NHS Organ Donor Register is one thing we know people often just haven’t got around to doing. This Christmas, we are asking everyone who supports organ donation to take just a few minutes of their online time to show that support by joining the NHS Organ Donor Register.”
There is no age limit to joining the register - and everyone is encouraged to have a conversation with their family about organ donation.
There is a particular need for more black and Asian organ donors. People from black and Asian communities have a higher incidence of conditions such as diabetes and certain forms of hepatitis, making them more likely to need a transplant, yet people from these communities are less likely to agree to organ donation. While some may be able to receive an organ from a white donor, for many others the best, or only, match would be from someone from the same ethnic background.
Organ donation saves and transforms lives. Thanks to people donating after their deaths over the last year 32 people living in East Sussex had a potentially life-changing transplant. In the last five years 167 people in East Sussex have had a life-changing transplant.
This time last year, three-year-old Elliott’s life had been spent almost entirely in hospital, his little heart beating thanks only to a mechanical device and the determination of doctors.
His parents, Adrian and Candace Livingstone, clung to fading hopes someone would donate and his life would be saved.
Thanks to someone donating their own child’s organs at their own tragic time, Christmas this year will be a time of happiness and hope for Elliott and his family.
Adrian said, “Thanks to an organ donor, this year we are looking forward to a Christmas we never thought we would have the chance to have. For this we will always be grateful.”