21 September, 2016
Today, with NHS Blood and Transplant, we’re officially announcing the 500th non-directed donation in the UK has taken place.
From us to all of the 500 and to the medical teams who make non-directed donation possible we say THANK YOU and we wish the 500 recipients and their donors on-going good health.
NHS Blood and Transplant and partner charities are now calling for more people to consider saving lives by donating to a stranger.
Lisa Burnapp, Lead Nurse for Living Donation at NHS Blood and Transplant said: “Nearly three hundred people died waiting for a kidney transplant last year.
“Living donation is highly successful, and hundreds of people have had their lives saved and transformed in reaching this milestone over the past decade, thanks to the incredible generosity of these donors.”
Last year, 83 altruistic donors donated a kidney to a patient. Of these donations, 25 went into an altruistic donor chain – 12 short chains involving two transplants, and 13 long chains of three transplants. The chains together enabled transplants for 60 adult and three paediatric patients. That compares to 17 donations into chains and 34 transplants during the previous financial year, before long chains were introduced.
Lisa Burnapp added: “Through donor chains, up to three can people can benefit from a single donation because it can trigger a chain of transplant. The more people who are willing to consider donating in this way, the more kidneys there are available to help everyone waiting for a transplant.”
Bob Wiggins, Chair of charity Give a Kidney, said: “When the first non-directed donors came forward around 10 years ago, many medical professionals thought there would just be a handful of people willing to donate in this way, so reaching 500 is a significant milestone worth celebrating. As a result of these 500 people, many hundreds of lives have been changed for the better and, not only that, together they have already saved the NHS millions of pounds over the cost of keeping the recipients on dialysis treatment.”
Fiona Loud, Policy Director at the British Kidney Patient Association, said: “The generosity of living donors is absolutely fantastic; we and the patients we support are very grateful for the gift of life which organ donation gives. The altruistic programme has transformed lives by giving more kidney patients the chance of a transplant and we are delighted that this important milestone has been reached. We hope it will continue to encourage more living donors and more kidney transplants.”