Belfast Telegraph

Public are urged to sign up to register

By Victoria O'Hara

More life-saving transplants are carried out using kidneys donated by living donors in Northern Ireland than are taken from people who have died, figures have revealed.

The new statistics released today show that over a 12-month period 57 living donor kidney transplants took place in Belfast –17 more than those using an organ from someone who had died.

Between April 2013 and March 2014 the only transplant unit in Northern Ireland, which is based in Belfast, carried out 40 'deceased' transplants.

This year's Organ Donation and Transplantation Activity Report said that this compared to 46 living donor kidney transplants and 25 deceased donor kidney transplants which took place the year before.

But while the rising number of transplants from live donors has been welcomed it has led to further calls for the public to sign the organ donor registry.

There are currently around 200 people waiting for an organ transplant in Northern Ireland. And 15 people die annually on the waiting list.

Catherine McCarley was one of the live donors in 2014 in Northern Ireland. Earlier this year the 64-year-old from Ballyclare went under the knife for a person she had never met.

"It really is the best thing I have done. I only knew about it when I watched a television show and realised the law had been changed," she said.

"Up until then I thought it was only family members that could do it."

For more information visit www.organdonationni.info

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