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South Asian Community Organ Donation Campaign

Working in partnership with NHS Blood and Transplant, MHN helped promote and deliver the highly successful South Asian Community Organ Donation Campaign. South Asian people of which Muslim comprise the significant majority in the UK, are three times more likely to need a kidney transplant than the rest of the population. This is because illnesses such as diabetes, kidney disease and heart disease, which may result in organ failure, occur more often in the South Asian community.

NHSBT’s new campaign aimed to increase awareness about the lack of organ donors in the South Asian community and challenge the misconceptions surrounding organ donation. It also aimed to help people make more informed choices by providing accurate information and encouraging more people to register as organ donors.

Various communication channels employed by MHN and other partner organisation included media packs that highlighted some of the compelling statistics that surround organ donation and the South Asian community, such as:

  • Currently nearly 1,500 South Asian people are waiting for a transplant.
  • Only 1% of people on the NHS Organ Donor Register are from the South Asian community.
  • The lack of suitable donors means that, on average, South Asian people wait nearly twice as long for a kidney transplant.

The Muslim Health Network continues to work with NHSBT to encourage more South Asian people to join the NHS Organ Donor Register (the confidential national database of people willing to become donors after they die). Working together, we also aim to dispel some common myths that are known to affect donation rates, in particular assumed religious objections.

All the major religions of the UK support the principles of organ donation and transplantation. However, within each religion there are different schools of thought, and clear criteria. All the major religions accept that organ donation is down to individual choice and anyone with concerns or doubts about the religious implications of organ donation is encouraged to talk to their spiritual or religious leader.

Anybody who would like advice about the issues surrounding organ donation can call the Organ Donor line on
0300 123 23 23 or visit www.organdonation.nhs.uk.

Please also view a previous MHN article on the subject, available here


Article Resources

Organ Donation NHS