Celebrating life during Organ Donation Week 2019

This week was a celebration of life during Organ Donation Week 2019, raising awareness and promoting new methods of becoming a donor.

Organ Donation Week (2 – 8 September) highlights the important work of organ donation and is a call to action to encourage more people to sign up to the register, plus speak about their options with friends and family.

Donor families and transplant patients have also spent this week sharing their experiences of organ donation. It is important work.

WHAT IS ORGAN DONATION?

Did you know? Organ donation from one person can save up to nine lives.

Modern medicine has made a wealth of achievements and leaps forward year on year. One of the greatest medical achievements has been organ donation. In a hospital setting, if a patient has died or is expected to pass away due to serious injury then discussions begin around organ donation.

Across Scotland, 550 people living with life-threatening illnesses and are on the transplant list. This means they are desperately waiting for an organ or tissue donation for survival.

REGISTER

Anyone can register to be on the organ donor register – regardless of age. Parents and guardians can register their children under the age of 12 in Scotland to join the register. We all have the opportunity to help someone in need.

Whatever your age, and health: you can register to join the organ donation register. Similarly, it is entirely up to you which organs and tissue you wish to donate – nobody will force you into anything.

Frequently asked questions and concerns are helpfully answered throughout the Organ Donation Scotlandwebsite.

TALK

Becoming a donor is fantastic, but it is critical that you talk to your family about your choices. Figures released during Organ Donation Week have highlighted that around 2,500 organs were missed in the last year because families refused to donate their family member’s organs.

This can be an upsetting time for families, and many families highlighted that they didn’t know if organ donation was the option that their loved one truly wanted. Talking about your choices is important.

OPT OUT

Scotland is changing, and with this comes a change in the law around organ and tissue donation. From Spring 2020 in Scotland, and across England, all adults aged over 16 (and 18 in England) will be considered as having agreed to donate their organs when they die, unless they have opted-out.

Wales have had this procedure in place since 2015, and with an opt-out process in place it has never been a more critical time to discuss organ donation with a loved one, and raise awareness.

Have you shared your donation decision? #PassItOn over on Twitter.

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