Join the donor register and you could help save lives

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In just over a week’s time, many of us will be looking forward to tucking into a tasty Christmas meal with our families and friends.

But for many, the chance to enjoy those festive traditions will be tainted by uncertainty and worry.

Severely ill people who are waiting on the organ transplant list will be spending Christmas in hospital, hoping they will get that life-saving operation.

Others will have to go without a turkey dinner with all the trimmings because eating such food would make them more unwell.

So we are glad that today 21-year-old Hannah Cochrane has told us her story about needing a new heart and raised further awareness of the plight of those waiting for organ donations.

More donors are desperately needed and we certainly back calls for people to join the donor register, thereby increasing the chances of matches being found for those desperately hoping for transplants.

It doesn’t take long –and one donor could help save as many as 50 people. But only if you’re on that register.

We don’t believe people are not joining up because they have some strong objection.

And there is a debate to be continued over the system of voluntarily opting in and whether it is preferable to mandatory inclusion unless you opt out.

Maybe there are many people out there who think the organ donor register is a good idea, but have just never got around to doing anything about it.

Well now is your chance to help people like Hannah, who needs a new heart after a condition has left hers requiring a pump to keep her alive.

Hannah acknowledges that she is lucky to be able to live a normal life while she waits for her transplant.

But others on the donor register are not so lucky, and need replacement organs urgently or face losing their lives.

As Hannah says: ‘Without organ donation, me and many other people may not get the chance to see any more Christmases, fulfil any more dreams and most of all just enjoy living.’

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