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To: Theresa May
Bring organ transplantation into the National Curriculum
Include organ transplantation into the National Curriculum so that children and young adults can learn about the benefits of organ donation (transplants) and then can express their views on it to their family encouraging conversation in the home.
This will be beneficial in that it will encourage discussion about death and our wishes after we die.
It will also allow young people, who cannot join the organ donor register, let their family know how they feel about their organs being donated.
Why is this important?
There are over 6500 people, including children currently waiting for an organ transplant in the UK.
A reluctance to talk about transplants is contributing to a deadly shortage of organs available for donation. Figures have shown that 450 patients waiting for a new organ died last year because families, unsure of their deceased relatives' wishes, declined to donate.
A further 875 were taken off the organ waiting list, mainly because of ill health, with many dying shortly afterwards.
'Put yourself in the shoes of someone waiting for a transplant.
If you are willing to accept an organ donation, surely it is only right that you should be willing to donate the special gift of life to another family."
A family's support is still needed for donation to go ahead, so even if someone is on the NHS organ donor register it's vitally important that they discuss this with their family so that their wishes can be carried out.
Providing education in schools will stimulate conversation about transplantation and help reduce concerns felt by children and families.
If presumed consent becomes law it will not necessarily end the shortage of available organs.
Only informed conversation and education can do this.
Without a liver transplant, I would be dead. Over 50,000 people have had their lives saved by organ transplants. I spent 9 months waiting for a liver transplant but 15 years incredibly sick, unable to work for large amounts of time, or maintain relationships. A liver transplant has changed my life but not everyone is so fortunate.
I know of one girl, who will remain nameless, that died on the eve of her 21st birthday while awaiting a donor organ. Born with liver disease she received a liver transplant at 18 months and made a recovery. She was waiting for her second transplant when she died.
There is no guarantee that another organ will be available for me if I at some stage require one. And there is every chance I and many others will need another.
Please help me make a difference.