Organ donation figures are up, but 18 people in Milton Keynes remain on the transplant list

Tell your family you want to save lives through organ donation
Tell your family you want to save lives through organ donation

New figures reveal 12 people from Buckinghamshire became lifesaving deceased organ donors over the last year, helping the UK reach its highest ever number of donors.

More families in the area are supporting donation though - there has been a 71% increase in donors in Buckinghamshire over the last decade.

But more are still needed to cope with demand - currently, 18 people from Milton Keynes are on the transplant waiting list.

NHS Blood and Transplant has released the figures to mark the publication of its annual Transplant Activity Report, which was released on Monday.

The report reveals there is growing support for organ donation in Buckinghamshire and around the country.

Nationally, there was a record number of organ donors, with 1574 people saving lives through deceased organ donation over the last year.

However the overall shortage of donors remains and there is an urgent need for more people to support donation. Around three people die a day in need of a donated organ but many people have never told their relatives they want to save lives. Letting your family know that you want to donate will make it much easier for them to support what you want.

There are still 67 people from Buckinghamshire on the transplant waiting list and a donated organ is the last and only hope for many people on the list.

Sally Johnson, director of Organ Donation and Transplantation for NHS Blood and Transplant, said: “We’re incredibly grateful to all the families in Buckinghamshire who have chosen to say ‘yes’ to organ donation. Organ donation is the only hope for many desperately ill people. We know many families feel a sense of pride and comfort from their decision to save lives through organ donation. We want more people to have that opportunity.

The annual report also demonstrates how the ageing population means the average age of potential donors is increasing. The average age of donors in Buckinghamshire during the 2017 calendar year was 55.

Anyone can join the NHS Organ Donor Register, age and medical conditions are not necessarily a barrier to donation. However many over 50s don’t join the NHS Organ Donor Register or tell their families they want to donate because they don't think their organs could help other people.

Sally Johnson said: “We need more people aged over 50 in Buckinghamshire to support donation.

“People in older age groups can still save and transform lives through organ and tissue donation. Many more lives could be saved by telling their families they want to donate.”

Tell your family you want to save lives through organ donation and join the NHS Organ Donor Register at www.organdonation.nhs.uk