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To ask you not to leave it until it's too late.....

185 replies

KnappShappey · 20/07/2015 14:43

to discuss organ donation with your family and next of kin.

New statistics released today show that organ donation has dropped by 5% for the first time in 10 years.....

Only 58% of families allowed organ donation to go ahead despite the wishes of their loved ones.

Don't leave it to your family to struggle with the decision once you have gone, discuss it today........

You can register online and share your decision on Facebook to raise awareness amongst friends.

OP posts:

CtrlAltDelicious · 20/07/2015 14:45

I've never understood why family are able to go against the donor's wishes. I've carried a donor card for many years because I believe it's the right thing to do. Why should a family member, for whatever, be able to trump my wishes of what happens to my body?


shitebag · 20/07/2015 14:46

Totally agree, a small thing for a donor to do but a massive impact on another family :)

I have a card and have discussed it with my family, my Mum is adamant she couldn't allow it regardless of my wishes but I guess its a horrid thought for any parent.


Salmotrutta · 20/07/2015 14:47

I'm already registered and I know DH would consent (and vice versa) but part of the problem here is next of kin who go against the deceased's wishes Sad

And sadly, they often regret their lack of consent and wish they had agreed.


muminhants1 · 20/07/2015 14:47

It really annoys me that families can overrule their loved ones wishes. I don't agree with an opt-out system but I do think that if you are on the register that should be that. Anyway, my husband is well aware of my views on the subject.


MammaFett · 20/07/2015 14:49

I'm registered and my family all know my wishes and have said they will comply. I can't understand how a family would say no tbh.


Gatehouse77 · 20/07/2015 14:52

I agree Ctrl. I also cannot fathom why family members would choose to go against their relative's wishes. Doesn't show much 'respect' for them...

I also think it should be an opt out service.

Personally, I have gone for donating my whole body to science upon my death but if they don't want it (there a re some circumstances under which it wouldn't meet the criteria) then they can take any part of me they like.

I have discussed this with DH, my children and siblings. Of course I won't know if they don't go ahead with my wishes but I'd be damned surprised if they didn't.

Also, we have discussed what the children would prefer should such circumstances occur and they are all for organ donation.

So, OP I totally agree with you that this should be open for discussion.


Salmotrutta · 20/07/2015 14:52

They say no because they are shocked, grieving and find it hard to think of their loved one being used for organs.
It's afterwards (in many cases) they realise some comfort will come from knowing their loved ones organs helped someone else and come to regret the decision to overrule.


KnappShappey · 20/07/2015 14:54

I don't understand it either. I understand that an opt out system is a totally different issue but having your wishes overridden once you are dead (either wishes for or against) seems mad.

Please write to your MP about it if you feel strongly, you can email them in the time it takes to post here and if enough people raise it maybe something will be done, or at least it will be discussed.

You can find your MPs email here by entering your postcode - make them earn the 10% pay rise they have just had!

OP posts:

UrethraFranklin1 · 20/07/2015 14:55

I think we should have a register to sign up to that no one can over ride.
Also a register of those who dont like the idea so wont donate, who are therefore ineligible to get a donated organ.


meglet · 20/07/2015 14:55


I've told mine I'll come back and bloody haunt them if they ever stopped my organs being donated.

when dad died it was one of the first things I asked when I got the call from my sister. luckily they'd already asked, he was pro - donation and we hadn't forgotten. Sadly nothing could be used due to the vast amount of cancer medication he was on but I'm glad we checked.


DoeEyedNear · 20/07/2015 14:56


It should be an opt out system not an opt in one.


LibrariesGaveUsPower · 20/07/2015 14:58

I agree that people should be able to make a binding decision to donate during their lifetime.

I have told DH in no uncertain terms that, if the time comes and he doesn't donate all the bits he can I will be coming back from beyond to give him a bollocking. He believes me.Grin

I feel really strongly that the (usually unexpected ) death of a loved one is not the time we should expect people to make this decision. Talk about it openly and often.


LibrariesGaveUsPower · 20/07/2015 14:59

ha ha. Cross post with meglet there.Grin


Lurkedforever1 · 20/07/2015 15:03

Yanbu. Families should not be able to over ride the donors wishes.
I also think it should be an opt out system. And that more info needs to be out there so bereaved family members don't think the donor is left looking like they are mid autopsy.


wannaBe · 20/07/2015 15:03

I don't agree with the idea of an opt out system because that essentially says that your body is the property of the state unless you take steps for that not to be the case. We should never aspire to live in a society which advocates this.

Fwiw I am on the organ donor register so I don't have an issue with organ donation. I do have an issue with opt-out though, or one which says you cannot receive unless you are prepared to donate.

Also, while I can see the issue with relatives overriding someone's wish to donate their organs and don't think this should be allowed to happen, I do wonder how many of those who are pro donation and against relative intervention would be happy to uphold someone's wish not to donate their organs if they were approached to make that final decision.


LazyLouLou · 20/07/2015 15:07

After MIL died DH (executor) and I dealt with the coroner. We knew that her illness had directly caused her suicide and when he asked for permission to retain brain and spinal chord we said yes, with one caveat, no one else would ever be told.

SILs family are catholic, no one in DHs family is in anyway religious, but SILs family were trying to arrange a lying in etc. Both coroner and funeral director were informed of the situation and both agreed to tell anyone who contacted them that they advised against an open casket. Good job as 3 or 4 of SILs family tried to take over the funeral arrangements. All of this despite MIL having left 2 notes, one of which outlined her wishes - which DH and I followed.

I have no idea how others manage but I know I went onto auto pilot: What would they have wanted? How do I make that happen?

DH can't donate, he has had Hepatitis and I don't think I can either (pernicious anaemia) but we do check and see if the conditions have changed.

Reading this has reminded me to do so again, now!


Titsalinabumsquash · 20/07/2015 15:07

As the mother of a child that will likely one day need a double lung transplant, I think it should be opt out, if you're willing to accept an organ for yourself or a relative then you should be willing to donate. You don't need organs when you're dead ffs! Let someone else have a shot of life.


Spartans · 20/07/2015 15:07

I am very opposed to an opt out system for the reason that wannabe States.

I do believe we should have a register that no one can over ride. If you are on it, your organs are donated. No family consent needed'


StarsInTheNightSky · 20/07/2015 15:08

I agree with wannabe. We don't live in the UK and it isn't the case here thankfully, but a person's wishes should be respected join their death. I do not want my organs donated, neither does DH, but if he did I would abide by it.


KnappShappey · 20/07/2015 15:11

This is what I bloody love about Mumsnet,. so many lovely people.

But how can we get the message out there and get people talking? Numbers are down and people are dying (over 400 last year in the UK).

Opt out is a separate issue (all be it a big one) that seems to muddy the waters a bit.

I have nothing against people not donating but it breaks my heart to think of people not being able to donate due to their relatives wishes (42% of families going agains the deceased wishes seems so high)..... please email your MP to get this discussed higher up. Share it on Facebook, do anything to raise awareness...... Smile

OP posts:

Gatehouse77 · 20/07/2015 15:13

On reflection, if the system was changed so that family could not override the donor's wishes then I would be happier with that than the opt-out system.


GeorgeYeatsAutomaticWriter · 20/07/2015 15:17

Is it the case that you can't have an open coffin if you opt for organ donation? Or does it depend on which organs are donated?


Totality22 · 20/07/2015 15:18

I didn't realise that next of kin could overrule a donor card?

The opt out system (although I would completely support it) will probably never get the green light but surely the next if kin rule can be changed?


wannaBe · 20/07/2015 15:19

it needs wider discussion to understand the figures though. e.g. how many families do agree to donate organs of people who weren't on the register and had never discussed their wishes.

And no medical treatment should be conditional because that is a very slippery slope to go down. "sorry, you're not on the organ donor register, therefore now that you need an organ we're afraid you will just have to die." Even though once you have received an organ you afaik wouldn't be eligible to donate anyway? Hmm where do we draw that line? no blood transfusions if you're not a blood donor? no bone marrow transplant if you're not on the register? No IVF if you've had a termination? No treatment for liver/lung/heart disease if you consume any alcohol/fatty food/if you're a smoker.... etc etc.


KnappShappey · 20/07/2015 15:19

I think a lot of people probably thing the same Gatehouse

Opt out seems to be too contentious at the moment, but just changing the ability of family to override the deceased's wishes would seem to boost donor numbers by 42% without anyone new even joining the register.....

Please email you MP everyone Grin

OP posts:
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