When Wales introduced OPT-OUT their consent rate fell. Opt-out was introduced in December 2015 and there was actually a small dip in the number of deceased donors, from 64 in 2015-16 to 61 in 2016-17. This resulted in a drop in organ transplants from 214 to 187 respectively.
That's just one example you say! Well in the UK when Opt-Out was introduced consent levels fell from 66% to 62%. https://nhsbtdbe.blob.core.windows.net/umbraco-assets-corp/30188/activity-report-2022-2023-final.pdf
So if you are considering changing to Opt-Out over an Opt-In System, you are looking for a silver bullet diversion to cover up the failings in the current system and approach.
Why do Donatelife continue to spend millions of dollars of Taxpayer Money on a registration system that has not had an impact on consent rates and one could argue is a contributing factor to the decline in them. Since consent rates peaked at around 60% in 2018 they have been in decline in Australia and last year fell to just 54%. More people are dying in the right circumstances and with amendments in some states to Antemortem Intervention increasing the number of viable organs for transplant, more families are actually saying no when asked.
What is needed is a greater focus on the role either Family or NEXT of KIN have in the donation process.
No family sets out to be a deceased organ donor family.
Very few people, if any ,want to die at an age or health level where you are identified as a potential organ donor.
All we can hope for as a community or as patients waiting for a life saving transplant is that when a loved one is lost to a family before anyone is ready to say goodbye, that the family who must give consent, either knew their loved one wanted to be a donor hero. Or that they have' thought' what it means to give hope to others through the compassionate gift of life.
For 6 years the CEO of DonateLife has overseen the expenditure of millions of dollars on advertising campaigns to get more people to register their intent to be organ donors, knowing that organ donation can only take place with NEXT of KIN CONSENT. 6 years ago in 2017 NEXT of KIN CONSENT Rates were at 60% and looked to be on an increasing trend. Now they sit at 54%, a drop of 6%.
Putting that into perspective - if of the 1300 families who were asked to give consent in 2022 the rate of YES was 60%, 780 families would have said YES instead of the 701 beautiful families that did.
Based on 64% of those moving onto becoming donors, we could have had 499 Donor Heroes as opposed to 454.
At the same rate of lives saved per donor that would translate to 1345 transplants or 121 more than we had in 2022.
I get some flack for pointing out that the system is broken, mainly from those running the broken system, like they think they are beyond accountability and that they are the ones with the solutions.
It is time the OTA stopped using favourable statistics and misleading data to hide their failings. Ged Kearney as the minister must not hesitate to seek the truth and stop waste of taxpayers money on unnecessary sporting carnivals, professional sporting sponsorships and Community Grants to create outdated gaming channels to reach people to register.
Families are asked to consider organ donation whether their loved one has registered or not. and last year nearly 20% of families still said no to donation when they learned their loved one was on the organ registry but was never coming home.