The number of people donating organs after death reaches a record high

NHS Blood and Transplant (NHSBT) said 1,575 people donated organs after death in 2017/18.

Sally Johnson, NHSBT’s director of organ donation and transplantation, said: “I am so grateful to all those families who have chosen to help others at a time of personal tragedy.

“This news will give hope to the desperately ill people who are waiting for that lifesaving phone call.

“The increase in donations and transplants is made possible thanks to the generosity of donors and their families.”

But she said even more needed to be done. “We need to stress that the deadly shortage of organ donors remains.

“Around three people who could benefit from a donated organ still die a day.”

Last October the Government indicated it would shift towards an opt-out organ donation system in England, which presumes people give consent for their organs and tissues to be donated in the event of their death unless they state otherwise.

The opt-out system already operates in Wales and last year the Scottish Government said it would move towards a similar scheme.

Around 5,000 people die every year in circumstances where organ donation is possible.

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