There are currently over 600 people in Ireland awaiting life saving organ transplants including heart, lung, liver, kidney and pancreas.
2012 was almost an average year for deceased organ donors at 78, according to the National Organ Procurement Service at Beaumont Hospital. This figure was down as expected from the record set the previous year at 93, but only 2 donors off the 5 year average of 80.
Thanks to the generosity of these 78 deceased donors and their families 206 transplant operations took place in Ireland in 2012. Three of the deceased donors were non heart beating donors, or cardiac death donors, following from the one last year. The 131 deceased donor kidney transplants last year were complimented by a further 32 living donor kidney transplants bringing the year’s total of all kidney transplants to 163 making it an average year. A further three Irish patients received specialist living donor kidney transplants in the UK. Only 1 pancreas was transplanted simultaneously with a kidney transplant.
At 50, the livers transplanted were slightly less than the 5 year average of 54.2 Heart transplantation was well above average with 10 transplants being performed in 2012 up from 6 in 2011.
Lung transplantation was most improved and showed the greatest increase in the year with a record of 14 transplants for 2012.
The focus of Organ Donor Awareness Week is to raise awareness about the ongoing and ever increasing demand for organ donation and transplantation, and to seek support from the public to make an informed decision to carry an organ donor card.
Free information factfiles, which accompany organ donor cards, are obtainable from the Irish Kidney Association and are available nationwide from pharmacies, GP surgeries and Citizen Information Offices.
Organ Donor Cards can also be obtained by phoning the Irish Kidney Association LoCall 1890 543639 or Freetext the word DONOR to 50050. Visit website www.ika.ie
It is now possible to store an organ donor card, the ‘ecard’ on Smart mobile phones. Simply search for ‘Donor ECard’ at the IPhone Store or Android Market Place.