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NHS urges Bucks to talk about organ donation this Christmas

NHS urges Bucks to talk about organ donation this Christmas

Published by Scarlett Bawden-Gaul at 5:44am 24th December 2019.

There are nearly 80 people on the organ transplant list in Buckinghamshire alone. 

People are being urged to tell their friends and family their decision should anything happen to them. 

NHS Blood and Transplant understand it can be an uncomfortable conversation, but it could save the lives of many others. 

Holly Evered's son Albie needed a transplant, and in 2016 received a liver. 

Until then, Holly hadn't considered organ donation: 

"I actually wasn't on the organ donation register, it wasn't even a conscious decision it was just that at that point I had never had to think about organ donation. So to suddenly find out that my child needed an organ was very eye opening. 

"I'd also never considered there were so many people and children waiting for organs."

From spring 2020 in England and Autumn 2020 in Scotland the law around organ donation is changing. 

All adults in Buckinghamshire will be considered as having agreed to donate their organs when they die unless they have decided to "opt-out" or are in a group not covered by the law. 

Organ Donation Law Change

Families will stay involved in the process though, so it's important that they know what their friend/family member wanted. 

Holly Evered understands it's a difficult conversation to have, but wants people to think about how much of a difference it could make:

"It's all about education, I cant tell people what they should and shouldn't do but I try to share Albie's story and show the difference it made. 

"Albie's donor was actually a child, so that was a parent making the decision to donate their child's organs and I cant imagine what they must have gone through. 

"The decision didn't just save one life, it saved an entire family."

As well as organ donation, Holly wants people to remember blood donation. 

Albie had to have several blood transfusions while he was in hospital, and that wouldn't have been possible without blood donors.

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

"Christmas is an incredibly busy time of year, however away from the rush and bustle of preparing for the holiday it should also be a time for family and thinking of others.

"We are urging everyone in Buckinghamshire to take a moment to think about the people who will spend their Christmas hoping for just one thing; a life saving organ transplant. Would you like to help if you could? If you needed a transplant, would you want someone to donate to you?

"Please let your family know what your organ donation decision is so that we can save more lives. Every precious organ donor allows more families to spend special times together.

"A quick chat can save lives, and we know that even at a time of grief families take enormous comfort and pride from their loved one's donation."

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