Campaign to increase number of BAME organ donors

The Department of Health and Social Care has announced a new campaign to increase organ donation rates within black, Asian and minority ethnic communities.

Seeking to break down barriers to donation, the NHS Blood and Transplant campaign follows figures which show that 21 per cent of people who died on the waiting list last year were from a black, Asian or ethnic minority background. The figure was 15 per cent a decade ago.

The NHS Blood and Transplant report reveals only seven per cent of donors last year were from BAME backgrounds. Around half as many families support organ donation compared with families from a white background, highlighting how family refusal continues to be the biggest obstacle to organ donation among these communities.

Anthony Clarkson from NHS Blood and Transplant said: “While it is encouraging that more black, Asian and ethnic minority families are supporting donation – making more lifesaving transplants possible – change is not happening fast enough and too many lives are being lost. Although many black, Asian and ethnic minority patients are able to receive a transplant from a white donor, others may die if there is no donor from their own community. We are asking more people from these communities to talk about organ donation and share their donation decision with their families. Words save lives.”

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