Timing and person making request key in organ donation

Organ donation rates may increase if timing and the person making the request were standardised, according to researchers.

The authors carried out a review of 20 studies on organ donation to investigate what factors either encouraged or discouraged relatives to consent.

Two issues had the strongest effect on relatives: timing and the person making the request.

They say it is essential that a request for organ donation does not take place when notification of death is communicated to relatives or when brain stem death testing takes place – it is very important that there is a gap between ‘bad news’ and a request for donation.

The person making the request is also key and the study concludes that in an ideal situation a donor transplant coordinator together with hospital staff would make the request.

In the UK demand for organs exceeds supply and one person dies daily on the transplant waiting list.

neil.durham@haymarket.com

  • Should organ donor arrangements be standardised?

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