After years of campaigning, where hundreds of you helped share your experiences of organ donation, we can finally confirm that Max and Keira’s Law has been passed. From today the organ donation system in England has officially changed, however it will take some time for these changes to come into force due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Fiona Loud, Policy Director at Kidney Care UK, said: “We are delighted to welcome the law change, which we have supported for many years. It gives hope to the hundreds of people waiting for a kidney transplant right now, and we look forward to the time when the full benefits of the new law can be realised.”
Due to the coronavirus pandemic it is not practical to introduce a presumed consent system right now. The transplant programme in the UK had virtually closed due to the virus but it is starting to re-open slowly. As we start to come out from the shadow of coronavirus we need to ensure that staff are trained and that innovative ways of talking about organ donation can be developed that maintain social distancing.
This new system is the same as the one in Wales, and the Scottish government have said they will to change to this system in 2021. We will continue to monitor the impact that Max and Keira’s Law has on transplants in the UK.
Fiona Loud adds: “There will need to be a huge amount of public awareness and education to help people understand the new law and dispel some of the myths surrounding organ donation. We will be working with policymakers and our medical colleagues to evaluate what happens next, and to support an increase in transplantation in the future. Capacity and resource must be built back up so that precious organs do not go to waste for want of an operating theatre or lack of staff.”