Strange Boat - Organ Donation Awareness


New EU Directive on Organ Donation

A new and inspired EU directive on organ donation adopted (Wednesday, May 19th) by a large majority of MEPs is designed to make organs available across the 27 EU countries.

People needing organ transplants should face shorter waiting times after Parliament approved a draft directive on quality and safety standards for human organs used for transplants. The directive covers all stages of the chain from donation to transplantation and provides for cooperation between Member States. MEPs also adopted a resolution on an Action Plan for organ donation.

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The Irish Kidney Association has welcomed yesterday’s landslide decision of members of the European Parliament to pass the Directive on Standards of Quality and Safety of Human Organs intended for transplantation.
This standardisation of the 27 European countries procurement, testing, characterization, preservation, transport and transplantation of human organs will make way for much more movement of suitable organs between member states.
Each state will have to establish a National Competent Authority.  The Chief Executive of the Irish Kidney Association, Mark Murphy, said, “I welcome the statutory appointment of the long overdue Irish Organ Transplantation Authority –  and soon !”. Mr. Murphy explained that, “this directive will inform the Department of Health and Children on how to proceed with the Irish Human Tissue Act which is waiting completion”.
The directive is accompanied by a ten point action plan which recognises the huge need for donor organs and the necessary action each member state should take to stimulate their health service into improving organ donation and subsequently allowing greater numbers of lives to be saved through transplantation.
This welcome recognition by the EU of the growing shortage of organs available for transplantation underpins the work of the members of the Irish Donor Network.
The directive will enter into force later in the year and each EU member state will have two years to adopt the directive.
Mr. Murphy said, “I believe the Irish Ministry for Health is well prepared for the changes necessary having completed various consultative processes and it has prepared a Draft Human Tissue Act. I anticipate that we will not need the two years allowed to implement this directive”.
“Ireland shares organs, which we have no match for on the day, with the UK, our nearest neighbour and the HSE sends some Irish children and some people requiring new lungs to the UK for more complex transplantation.”
In summation Mr. Murphy said, “there was a huge majority in favour of this directive and I believe this decision will turn out to be a milestone in the history of Organ Transplantation across Europe. There was landslide agreement for this decision with over 96% of the EU parliamentarians voting in favour of it”.

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