Organ Donation and Transplantation Strategy

Part of the debate – in Westminster Hall at 4:00 pm on 23rd February 2022.

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Photo of Anthony Mangnall Anthony Mangnall Conservative, Totnes 4:00 pm, 23rd February 2022

As ever, I thank the hon. Gentleman for his powerful intervention. He uses personal experience to lend great weight to a very serious topic, and that has certainly been registered by me and by the House. As we develop more and more strategies, as I hope we will, to encourage more and more to sign up on the organ donor register, people will hear his words, among those of others.

We are often quick to say that other countries have it better than us. While I am not suggesting that that is the case—especially thanks to the remarkable improvements that have been made over a short period of time—I will ask the Minister a final two questions. First, what engagement and consideration has the Department of Health and Social Care given to other countries’ organ donation and transplant strategies? Spain is often mentioned, and I would be interested to hear whether there is any consideration of that model and whether we can learn anything from it.

Secondly, the transplant benefit score also determines the position in which a patient might sit in relation to receiving an organ. How is that position altered when a new drug is used on a patient, presumably—one hopes—improving their situation? It would be interesting to understand whether the transplant benefit score is quick enough to determine where they are on that list.

The Meredith family are a fantastic group of campaigners for organ donation, and they are the reason why this debate is happening. I hope that their efforts in pushing me and others will result in renewed campaigns to make people aware of the organ donation register and to improve access to transplant facilities in the south-west. I very much look forward to hearing the Minister’s response.