Organ donation and transplant rates continue to recover, but thousands are still waiting

More than 740 patients in the North West wait for an organ donor to save their life

Latest annual figures published today (12 July) by NHS Blood and Transplant show that last year (2022/23) there was a five percent increase in the number of patients whose lives were saved or improved through an organ transplant in the UK.

The annual Organ and Tissue Donation and Transplantation Activity Report shows that 4,532 patients received donated organs from 2,386 donors – living and deceased – in the UK last year (2022/23). A five per cent increase on figures in 2021/22 (1).

In the North West 427 patients received a living or deceased transplant, compared to 457 in 2021/22. There are currently over 7,000 people on the active transplant waiting list in the UK, including 745 patients from the North West (2).

Clinicians warn that opportunities for transplant are still being missed due to families declining to support donation. People in the North West are being urged to confirm their organ donation decision on the NHS Organ Donor Register, families are more likely to support donation when they already know it was what their relative wanted. Nine out of 10 families honour their family member when the donor had confirmed their decision to donate on the NHS Organ Donor Register.

Last year (2022/23) there were 225 organ donors in the North West – living and deceased – compared with 215 donors the year before (3).

Anthony Clarkson, Director of Organ Donation and Transplantation at NHS Blood and Transplant, said:  

“Over 50,000 people are alive in the UK today thanks to the life-saving gift of organ donation, and 427 people had a transplant in the North West last year. But this wouldn’t be possible without the generosity of our incredible donors and their families who have given their support for donation at what is often the most difficult of times.

“We know that most people support organ donation in principle, and we have seen a steady increase in the number of people confirming their support for organ donation via the NHS Organ Donor Register, including 2.6 million in the North West (4).

“However, we still need families to support their loved one’s decision and agree to donation when approached, which we know is most likely when they know that’s what they wanted. With only one per cent of people dying in circumstances where organ donation is possible, every donor is precious and has the potential to save up to nine lives.

 

“We urge everyone who supports organ donation to confirm their decision on the NHS Organ Donor Register. It is a simple action which only takes two minutes; but can ultimately save lives.”

To find out more, and confirm your support for organ donation, visit: www.organdonation.nhs.uk, call 0300 123 23 23 or use the NHS app.


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