The coordinating voice for Black, Asian, Mixed Race and Minority Ethnic transplant donation

BAME Organ donation patients disproportionally affected by impact of COVID

NBTA welcomes the publication of the 2019/20 Organ Transplant Activities report by NHS
Blood and Transplant. COVID-19 has had a huge impact on organ donation and
transplantation since March 2020 and these annual figures have been significantly affected
as a result. We are most grateful to everyone within the NHS and NHSBT for their amazing
efforts in responding to the COVID-19 crisis and appreciate the efforts being made to
“recover” organ transplantation on a gradual basis. However, data is beginning to emerge
that patients from BAME background have been affected disproportionately in this area and
hospitals and NHSBT need to take careful account of this as they develop their recovery
plans.

Kirit Modi, Hon President of NBTA and a kidney transplant recipient said:
“While BAME communities continue to face major challenges in relation to organ
transplantation in the UK, we need to take urgent action to address inequalities in the
context of COVID-19, the change in law to “opt out” in England and Black Lives Matter.
NBTA is working with NHSBT in the production of a BAME report on organ donation which
will be published in September 2020. We know that more needs to be done by empowering
BAME communities to take the lead on addressing issues such as BAME patients having to
wait longer for a transplant, the significantly lower percentage of BAME families who give
consent to organ donation and the higher proportion of people from BAME background
who register to opt out. NBTA will continue to offer its support to NHSBT and hospitals in
addressing these issues.”

Notes:

  1. The percentage of families who consented to organ donation in 2019/20 was 42% for BAME
    families compared to 71% nationally.
  2. 8% of deceased organ donors are from the Black, Asian and minority ethnic (BAME)
    communities. By contrast, the BAME communities represent 14% of the UK population.
  3. For media queries please contact: nbta@racefound.org.uk
  4. A copy of the NHSBT report is available at: https://www.organdonation.nhs.uk/helping-you-
    to-decide/about-organ-donation/statistics-about-organ-donation/transplant-activity-
    report/_____________________________________________________
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