Organ Donation Law is changing in England from 20 May 2020

Posted By: on 18th May 2020 | Category: Powers of Attorney

The law relating to organ donation in England changes this week. From 20 May 2020, all adults in England will be considered to have agreed to be an organ and tissue donor when they die unless they have recorded a decision not to donate or they are in one of the excluded groups.

Excluded groups include those who lack capacity to understand the new arrangements and those who have lived in England for less than 12 months.

Why is the law changing?

Every day someone dies waiting for an organ transplant. It is considered that most people support the principle of organ donation but have not recorded their decision. The law is being changed to reflect what most people would want to happen and to help save and improve more lives.

What do I need to do if I don’t want to be an Organ Donor?

You can opt out by registering a “refuse to donate” decision on the NHS Organ Donor Register, a secure database that can only be accessed by specialist NHS staff https://www.organdonation.nhs.uk/register-your-decision/refuse-to-donate/refuse-donation-form/

If you are happy to be an organ donor, you can still register your decision and specify which organs and tissues you do or do not want to donate https://www.organdonation.nhs.uk/register-your-decision/register-your-details/

Once registered, you can change your decision, or update your personal details, online too https://www.organdonation.nhs.uk/register-your-decision/amend-your-details/

Will my family still be asked before my organs are donated?

If there comes a time when a decision has to be made about organ donation, a specialist nurse will work with your family to ensure that any decision recorded on the register is up to date. As well as recording your decision on the NHS Organ Donor Register it is therefore recommended that you also speak with your family so they know your wishes.

If you don’t have immediate family, or would want someone else to be involved in decisions about your health and welfare, you should consider making a Lasting Power of Attorney for Health and Welfare to ensure that the right people are involved if you are unable to communicate your wishes about this and other important care and medical decisions. If you would like to discuss

Lasting Powers of Attorney, contact Amanda Attrell at amanda.attrell@coolebevisllp.com, direct dial 01903 534526.
For more information on organ donation, visit https://www.organdonation.nhs.uk/

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