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Organ Donation: Presuming consent?

image Published: Oct 31, 2016

On 23 November the Church of Scotland highlighted the importance of organ donation, and the life- enhancing, life- giving effects that organ donation has on many families.

At an open meeting in Biggar organised by the Presbytery of Lanark, Dr Murdo Macdonald, SRT Project Policy Officer spoke on organ donation, while a local family talked about their experience of raising a child who has had to undergo an organ transplant.

Rev Mike Fucella, Convener of the Presbytery Committee who organised the event, said: “We are delighted to have the opportunity to discuss this important issue- one which affects many families in churches throughout Scotland”

“The Church of Scotland has for a number of years been a keen supporter of organ donation, encouraging its members to register as organ donors- and, very importantly, encouraging them to discuss their wishes in this regard with their family and friends”.

Mr Neil Healy, Specialist Nurse for Organ Donation with NHS Scotland commented: “Currently almost 38% of people in Lanarkshire have registered their wish to donate on the Organ Donor Register. Anyone who joins the Register can give the gift of life.  If you support organ donation, please take the time to visit www.weneedeverybody.org and join today.“

The event also highlighted the fact that the British Transplant Games will be held in North Lanarkshire in 2017. Mrs Jo Brown, speaking on behalf of Transplant Sport, commented: “The British Transplant Games were inaugurated in 1978 in Portsmouth. Over the past 39 years the Games have grown from a one- day event with 99 participants, to a four day annual event with over 900 transplant recipients aged from 2 - 80+ taking part in over 20 different sports with over 1500 supporters watching on.”

“Some participants come to win medals, training for their specialist events, hoping to be selected for Team GB & NI competing at the World Transplant Games.  However, most come to meet new friends, catch up with old friends, enjoy new sports at their own pace and socialize for a few days with others who have also faced debilitating illness but are now fit and well as a result of a successful transplant.”

For information about the British Transplant Games, please see http://www.transplantsport.org.uk/britishtransplantgames

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