The number of people living in Lincolnshire currently known to be alive thanks to organ transplants has reached 677.
The figure has been revealed by NHS Blood and Transplant, whose annual Transplant Activity Report, published yesterday, shows the UK-wide number of people alive thanks to transplants has reached the milestone figure of 50,000.
NHS Blood and Transplant is now urging people in Lincolnshire to help even more people to survive by joining the NHS Organ Donor Register.
More people are alive thanks to transplants because of improving survival rates and increased public commitment to donation. In Lincolnshire, the number of people on the Organ Donor Register has increased by 30 per cent over the past five years.
There are now 361,279 people on the NHS Organ Donor Register in Lincolnshire, compared to 276,911 five years ago.
Anyone can sign up as a donor on the NHS Organ Donor Register. Your age, and any existing medical conditions, shouldn’t stop you from signing up.
You could save or transform up to nine people’s lives by donating your organs when you die and help even more by donating tissue.
Nationally, the number of people on the NHS Organ Donor Register reached a record number, 23.6 million.
The public support for donation also means more people in Lincolnshire are receiving lifesaving and life enhancing transplants. Last year 63 people in Lincolnshire had transplants, compared to 56 five years ago.
Despite the record breaking public commitment to donation, there is still a shortage of organ donors.
Nationally, three people still die a day in need of a transplant, and there are still around 6,400 people currently waiting for a transplant.
This is a particular need for people to register from black and Asian backgrounds. People from the same ethnic background are more likely to be a match, but there are not enough black and Asian donors at this time, according to the NHS.
Sally Johnson, Director of Organ Donation and Transplantation, said: “More people than ever in Lincolnshire are committing to organ donation and that is saving more lives than ever. It’s amazing to picture all the people now alive today thanks to organ donation and think of all the families and children who have grown up thanks to donors.
“We’re seeing more and more people committing to donation and the good results of our close work with hospitals. Our specialist nurses in organ donation are now almost always involved in discussions with families over organ donation.
“However there is still a long way to go. Around three people still die a day in need of a transplant. Every one of those people who died could be a mother or a father, a daughter or a son, who might be alive today.
“Families tell us donation is a source of pride that helps them in their grieving process. We don’t want anyone in Lincolnshire to miss the opportunity to save lives through organ donation. Please join the NHS Organ Donor Register. It only takes two minutes.”
In 2013, the UK Governments and NHS Blood and Transplant launched a seven year organ donation and transplantation strategy, ‘Taking Organ Transplantation to 2020’. To view or download the strategy, visit www.nhsbt.nhs.uk/to2020.
• Most importantly, don’t forget to join the NHS Organ Donor Register at www.organdonation.nhs.uk