Our duty of care

Every effort will be made to save your life above all else

Healthcare professionals have a duty to save life wherever possible, but unfortunately, even after every effort has been made to save a patient’s life, this is not always possible.  

Only when End of Life care planning is started by the clinical team, is a referral made to the specialist organ donation nursing team.  These specialist nurses make a preliminary assessment of suitability for donation and the NHS Organ Donor Register is accessed to review any decisions a patient may have made in life.  The possibility of organ donation is then discussed with your family.

Death is confirmed in line with strict criteria

There are strict criteria in place in the United Kingdom to help those caring for the dying, by providing safe, timely and consistent criteria for the diagnosis of death.

Organs are never removed until a patient’s death has been confirmed in line with these criteria  and only when all the appropriate consents are in place.

As a donor, you will be treated with dignity and respect

The organ donation process involves a specialist team who ensure that donors are treated with the greatest care and respect during the removal of organs and tissue for donation.  Only those organs and tissue specified by the donor and agreed with the family will be removed.

Specialist nurses always speak to family members to see if there are considerations around someone’s faith, beliefs or culture in respect to funeral plans. 

After donation, the body is returned to the family of the deceased in the same way as any death in a hospital where donation has not taken place. Families are given the opportunity to spend time with their loved one after the operation if they wish.