In spring 2020 the law around organ donation in England is changing, in a historic move that could save hundreds of lives a year. Every year, many lives are saved or improved by organ donation. One organ donor can save or transform the lives of up to nine people and help many more if they also donate tissue.
There has been tremendous progress in the number of transplants taking place, but there is still a shortage of donors. On average, across the UK, three people are dying every day in need of an organ transplant. So, the law around organ donation in England is changing to enable more people to pass on more organs to save more lives.
From spring 2020, all adults in England will be considered to have agreed to be an organ donor when they die unless they had recorded a decision not to donate or are in one of the excluded groups*. This is commonly referred to as an ‘opt out’ system. Adults covered by the change will still have a choice whether they want to be an organ donor and their families will still be involved before organ donation goes ahead.
Once you’ve made your decision, pass it on to your family and friends to help ensure they honour this decision when the time comes. Pass on the campaign too, so as many people as possible know that the law around organ donation is changing and know the choices available to them. To find out more about your choices, including how to opt out, visit www.organdonation.nhs.uk or call 0300 303 2094.
* - people under 18
* - people who have lived in England for less than 12 months before their death or who are not living here voluntarily
* - people who lack the capacity to understand the change