People in Northern Ireland are to be asked if they want to change organ donation to an opt out system rather than an opt in.
They will be asked before a private member‚Äôs bill is introduced by Jo-Anne Dobson MLA, from the Ulster Unionist party. It is hoped the change would increase the number of people who make their organs available for transplant.
Currently people commit to donating their organs at death by signing a donor card or joining the organ donor register.
But this system means that most people are not registered as donors. In an opt out system it would be presumed people were willing to donate their organs unless they had made an opt out declaration. However family members would still have the final decision on whether a loved one‚Äôs organs were made available for transplant.
Ms Dobson said "The supply of available organs does not meet demand. That's why I believe a change in the law is needed to increase supply and save lives." More than 200 people are currently waiting in Northern Ireland for a transplant. One of the main reasons people need a heart transplant is cardiomyopathy.The bill already has the backing from all six transplant charities.It is hoped members will vote on the proposed legislation before the end of the year.
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