NEARLY 70 people in Lancashire have died in the past five years due to a shortage of organ donations.
NHS Blood and Transplant has published the figures as part of a drive to get more people to sign to donor register, while urging people to talk to their families about their decision.
The authority said there were 282 people in Lancashire waiting for a transplant, while 69 people had died since 2008 due to the organ shortage.
It is vital that potential donors tell their loved ones, as only a third of families agree to the donation going ahead if they are unaware of the decision.
Yesterday, the Lancashire Telegraph reported how 14-year-old Hoghton girl Emily Linaker’s life had been saved thanks to a heart transplant.
Emily, a pupil at the St Thomas’ Centre, Blackburn, was given the heart of a woman in her 30s who died from a brain tumour.
Blackburn gran Jennifer Farrell saved the lives of at least five people after her shock death in 2010.
The 52-year-old, who suffered a catastrophic brain haemorrhage, was a life-long donor card carrier and donated her heart, lungs, liver, kidneys and corneas. And Padiham dad Nigel Tomlinson was saved from renal failure in 2012 after his cousin Chris McGowan donated one of his kidneys.
He had waited three years for a dead donor while he kept himself alive with hours of painstaking dialysis treatment every day.
Anthony Clarkson, acting director of organ donation and transplantation at NHS Blood and Transplant, said: “60 people in Lancashire have received a life-saving organ transplant from a deceased donor this year.
“To help save more people we need everyone, including the 436,769 people on the NHS Organ Donor Register in Lancashire, to talk to their loved ones about their donation decision.
“Fewer than 5,000 people each year die in circumstances where they can donate their organs, so the NHS needs to ensure every potential donor who wants to donate is not prevented from doing so because their family do not know what they would have wanted.”
To join the NHS Organ Donor Register, visit www.organdonation.nhs.uk or call 0300 123 23 23.