More action needed to increase donor numbers

Colin Hume.
Colin Hume.

Last year’s campaign by The Falkirk Herald encouraging people to join the Organ Donor Register certainly opened my eyes.

Having undergone a transplant myself, I have a vested interest in the subject but was still surprised by how many people refused to even consider the matter.

They weren’t necessarily against becoming donors, they simply weren’t ready to think about their own mortality.

One outcome of the campaign was me being asked to join NHS Forth Valley’s Organ Donor Committee, which reviews the health service’s actions in this area and looks at ways to highlight the issue.

I know plenty about the end of the process - getting a donor organ - but it was very revealing to hear from those at the start.

It must be extremely difficult to ask the recently bereaved if their loved one’s organs can be made available ... and we don’t make it any easier.

The issue of presumed concept - where people have to choose to opt out of becoming a donor rather the opt in - is an obvious way forward.

But I was surprised to learn it’s unlawful to put someone on ventilation to allow their organs to be ussed. If we want to save more lives issues like this need looked at.