Tissue / Organ Donation

The majority of people are in favour of donation regardless of ethnicity or religious preference and generally family members are not distressed by being asked about donation, they value the opportunity to consider this option.

It is important that people are given the opportunity to express their wishes about their end of life care so that these can discussed with their family and care provider. Discussing preferences such as preferred place of death, wishes regarding resuscitation or Organ and Tissue Donation overcomes misunderstandings and facilitates the fulfilling of people’s wishes when they are dying, and what happens after their death. It is important therefore to support your patients/residents/family members by offering them the opportunity to Advance Care Plan as early as is appropriate for them. The Gold Standards Framework for Advanced Care Planning is a useful tool for this process and includes a short video and also a downloadable document to record the discussion .

Any questions regarding potential donors, and their underlying diagnosis, should be discussed with the National Referral Centre on 0800 432 0559.

A Change in the Law

On 20th May 2020 the law changed and an “opt out”  organ donation system came in effect in England. This means that from 20 May 2020, all adults in England will be considered to have agreed to be an organ and tissue donor when they die unless they recorded a decision not to donate or are in one of the following excluded groups:

  • Those under the age of 18
  • People who lack the mental capacity to understand the new arrangements and take the necessary action
  • Visitors to England, and those not living here voluntarily
  • People who have lived in England for less than 12 months before their death

If you would like to speak to somebody about your organ donation choices, please call the dedicated line: 0300 303 2094

Article on Donating a Body to Medical Research with links to the Human Tissue Authority

Links to Other Wessex LMCs Pages:

Death Certification

Death certification (MCCD) process from 25th March 2022 following expiry of the Coronavirus Act temporary provisions.

End of Life Care

Living Wills, Enduring Powers of Attorney and Lasting Powers of Attorney.


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