Thousands alive in Surrey & Hampshire thanks to organ donation

There is an organ shortage with 457 people dying last year on the active transplant waiting list

There is an organ shortage with 457 people dying last year on the active transplant waiting listGaro Phanie Rex Features

According to a new report by NHS Blood and Transplant, there are now 50,300 people alive today thanks to organ transplants - more than enough to fill Chelsea's Stamford Bridge and nearly enough to fill Liverpool's Anfield stadium.

According to NHS Blood and Transplant's annual Transplant Activity Report, 278,831 people in Leeds alone are now registered to donate organs compared to 229,304 five years ago.

The number of people on the NHS Organ Donor Register has also reached a record number of 23.6 million, up by 4.9 million over five years. It came in response to the news a year ago that around 700 people in Yorkshire were waiting for lifesaving transplants.

In 2013, the UK Governments and NHS Blood and Transplant launched a seven year organ donation and transplantation strategy Taking Organ Transplantation to 2020.

"It's fantastic to picture all the people now alive today thanks to organ donation and think of all the families and children who have grown up thanks to donors".

Ms Johnson said: "There is still a long way to go. Now we need more organ donors to come forward so everyone requiring a transplant stands the best chance of receiving one". Every one of those people who died could be a mother or a father, a daughter or a son, who might be alive today.

Anyone can sign up as a donor on the NHS Organ Donor Register. "It only takes two minutes".

Some patients have received more than one organ, such as a new kidney and a pancreas. There are still over 6000 people across the United Kingdom waiting for an organ.

In addition, there is still a shortage of donors from Asian and minority ethnic communities.

"Families tell us donation is a source of pride that helps them in their grieving process".

If you have already signed up to be an organ donor, you are able to change your mind.

The 57-year-old, of Langwathby, near Penrith, was diagnosed in 2007 with primary sclerosing cholangitis, a rare liver disease which attacks the immune system.

"Words cannot describe how thankful I am to my donor family".

The mum-of-two, originally from Sheffield but who now lives in Wickersley, Rotherham, only discovered her liver was failing when she went for a routine medical as she was preparing to emigrate to New Zealand with her husband Jonnie and their two children, Mollie and Lola in 2010.

Colchester General Hospital employee Karen Mills was at breaking point in the months leading up to her transplant.

After the operation she struggled to breathe on her own and had to have oxygen for basic tasks such as taking a shower.

Now 31, she is a fierce advocate for organ donation.

Health minister Jackie Doyle-Price said: "Organ donation transforms and saves lives". You've just no life on a dialysis machine, you've got no life at all.

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