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Sunday 3 December 2023 Dublin: 5°C
Organ Donation

Most people would donate an organ, but many haven't spoken to their family about it

A report released today shows the increase in Ireland in organ donations.

MORE THAN 80% of people said they were willing to donate their own organs or those of a close family member.

However, only 50% of people said they have discussed organ donation with their family, according to the Organ Donation and Transplant Ireland (ODTI) annual report of 2015.

Last year 81 families donated the organs of a loved one, while 33 people donated their kidney to a family member.

Director of ODTI, Professor Jim Egan, said donations were needed more and more.

Last year 266 people received the gift of life. The need for organ transplants continues to increase.

Kidney transplant operations are the most common operations every year, with a total of 120 deceased kidney transplants being carried out last year. However, Egan says there is an ongoing need for donations.

At the end of 2015, there were 2,015 people in Ireland on renal dialysis with End Stage Kidney Failure (ESKF) for which the only treatment option for many is kidney transplant.

Last year there was a new record set for lung transplants in Ireland. With 36 lung transplants in Ireland, it is one of the highest in Europe.

The Mater Hospital carried out the first ever combined lung and heart transplant in Ireland as well as an innovative lung transplant procedure using ex-vivo lung perfusion in 2015.

According to Egan, the procedure, which sees unhealthy lungs repaired, will “greatly enhance the potential lung donor pool”.

Donor cards

A third of the population currently carry an organ donor card.

Only 44% of people who said they would donate an organ said they carry a card.

Just over half of people agreed that the family should have the final say in what happens to your organs, but 45% of those said they have discussed organ donation with their family.

Watch: Why Myles needs a kidney >

Read: ‘I only had six hours to live if I didn’t start pulling through >

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