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Tuesday, 31 May 2005 12:00
BNN: British Nursing News Online · www.bnn-online.co.uk
NHS to ask ‘healthy’ donors for kidneys
The NHS is to attempt to encourage more healthy people to donate a kidney in a bid to ease the severe shortage of organs in the health service.

A change in the law will allow people to donate their kidneys to strangers, although donors will not be allowed to receive payment for their organs.

Of the 1,915 transplants carried out in the last 14 months, 526 were from healthy friends or relatives, a much smaller proportion than in other countries.

Patients who receive kidneys from living donors have a 93 per cent survival rate in the first year and an 84 per cent survival rate five years later. Those receiving kidneys from dead donors have only an 87 per cent survival rate after one year, dropping to 73 per cent after five.

Health officials will now focus on educating patients who have just been diagnosed with kidney failure so that they might find a donor far more quickly than is possible at present.

People are able to live comfortably with one kidney but a survey by YouGov shows that only 44 per cent would donate a kidney as they worry about something going wrong with the one remaining organ.


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