South east Hampshire area GPs have praised the national Organ Donor Register which has saved more than 1,200 lives in Hampshire.
New figures released today by NHS Blood and Transplant shows the UK-wide number of people alive thanks to transplants has reached the 50,000 milestone, including 1,257 in Hampshire.
NHS Blood and Transplant is now urging people to help even more people to survive by joining the NHS Organ Donor Register – a move supported locally by leading GPs.
In Hampshire, the number of people on the Organ Donor Register has increased by 27% over the past five years. There are now 715,271 people on the register in the county, compared to 563,923 five years ago.
Nationally, three people still die a day whilst awaiting a transplant. There are around 6,400 people currently waiting for a transplant, with a particular need for people to register from black and Asian backgrounds.
Dr Elizabeth Fellows, who chairs the NHS Portsmouth Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) governing Board, and is signed up on the register, said: “Clearly the register is a huge success story, but we could all play a part in both improving the statistics of those people registered – and also bringing down the figures of those people who die whilst awaiting a transplant.
“We can transform up to nine people’s lives by donating our organs when we die and help even more by donating tissue.”
Dr Paul Howden, the deputy clinical lead for NHS Fareham and Gosport CCG, who is also on the register and a blood donor, said: “What greater gift can we bestow on others? Organ donation is literally a gift of life.
“The fact that more than 1,200 people in Hampshire are alive today thanks to the register is obviously a fantastic thing, but so much more could be achieved if only more of us signed up to the programme, and let our loved-ones know our wishes.”
Anyone can sign up as a donor on the register by visiting www.organdonation.nhs.uk. Your age or existing medical conditions shouldn’t stop you from signing up.
Last year 152 people in Hampshire had transplants, compared to 96 five years ago.