Warning over organ donor rates

There has been a "huge failure" to boost organ donation rates among black, Asian and other ethnic minority groups, an expert has said.

Central

Priority surgery for organ donors

A Midlands doctor is calling for a radical approach to increase the number of black and Asian people donating their organs.

Organ donating forms Credit: ITV News Central

According to Dr Adnan Sharif, a kidney consultant at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham, the UK should consider a scheme where priority for surgery is given to people already on the organ donor register.

He says there has been a 'huge failure' to boost organ donation rates among Asian and other ethnic minority groups.

Calls for new approach to organ donation

Relatives of non-white people are also less likely than white people to give consent for organ donation from loved ones who have died in appropriate circumstances for donation.

Simply pushing for more registrants on the organ donor register is not the solution because only a third of eventual donors are actually registered at the time of their death.

A new approach should be to tackle the elephant in the room: the problem of apathy or so called free riders - people who are happy to receive an organ but not to donate.

– Dr Adnan Sharif, a kidney consultant at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham

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'Failure' to boost ethnic minority organ donation rates

An expert warned there has been a "huge failure" to boost organ donation rates among black, Asian and other ethnic minority groups. Credit: PA Wire

There has been a "huge failure" to boost organ donation rates among black, Asian and other ethnic minority groups, an expert has said.

The UK should now consider a scheme where priority for surgery is given to people already on the organ donor register, according to Dr Adnan Sharif, a kidney consultant at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham.

Read about ITV's From The Heart appeal here

Figures show that ethnic minorities make up 10.8% of the UK population yet represent 24% of the organ waiting list.

Just 4.2% of organ donors are from minority ethnic backgrounds and there are only around 118,000 people registered from these backgrounds to give an organ after their death, Dr Sharif wrote online in the British Medical Journal (BMJ).

Read: 147,000 join organ donor register after ITV campaign