Policy Statements - ORGAN DONOR SYSTEMS

Passed by the NKF September 1999 (amended 2008 and 2019)

The gift of life


The National Kidney Federation supports the change in the law brought about by the Organ Donation (Deemed Consent) Act 2019, (also known as Max and Keira’s Law) which means that from Spring 2020 all adults in England and Wales will be considered to have agreed to be an organ and tissue donor when they die unless they recorded a decision not to donate or are in one of the excluded groups. This is commonly called an “opt out” system.

People will still have the right to choose whether or not to be an organ donor but will have to record their decision or tell their family. The NKF still believes that organ donation remains a great act of generosity by the deceased donor.

The NKF continues to encourage everyone who wishes to donate, to ensure their name is on the NHS Organ Donor Register – both before and after the new Act comes into force. This is a secure database that holds the details of all those who have registered a decision about organ donation and can only be accessed by specialist NHS staff. The family of a potential donor will still be approached to discuss the option of organ and tissue donation so that those who want to donate should discuss their wishes with their family as well as recording their decision on the register as this remains the best way to ensure their decision is honoured.